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De uma erva daninha, italianos desenvolvem droga com mesmo efeito do Viagra [en]

Um grupo de pesquisadores italianos, da Universidade de Milão, desenvolveu um composto com as folhas, em forma de coração, de uma erva daninha, conhecida como chifre de cabra, que pode ser a chave para uma nova droga para tratar da deficiência orgânica erétil. Ou seja, um remédio que pode ser tão eficaz quanto os famosos comprimidos azuis Viagra, mas sem efeitos colaterais.  A planta, já utilizada como afrodisíaco em culturas tradicionais, é conhecida cientificamente como Epimedium brevicornum.

A notícia foi divulgada pela publicação News Scientist, e o trabalho disponibilizado em ACS Publications (acesse abaixo o texto). Os pesquisadores estudaram e testaram quatro diferentes espécies de plantas, já utilizadas contra a impotência sexual, para verificar qual delas provocaria o mesmo resultado obtido pela substância sildenafil, que, ao inibir a enzima PDE5, responsável pelo controle do fluxo de sangue no pênis, provoca a ereção.

O icariin, substância existente na planta Epimedium brevicornum,  revelou a mesma propriedade como inibidor  do PDE5, mas 80 vezes inferior ao sildenafil. Assim, os cientistas italianos produziram um composto que obteve os mesmos resultados que o Viagra.

Os exames preliminares indicaram que a droga feita com o composto causa menos efeitos secundários do que o Viagra, inclusive em relação ao coração. Na verdade, pessoas que têm problemas cardíacos não têm recomendação para utilizar o Viagra.

Agora, o composto passará por uma longa faze de testes clínicos antes de ser aprovado definitivamente, podendo demorar 10 anos até ser lançado no mercado.

A planta que poderá revolucionar o tratamento da disfunção erétil é encontrada na China, na Ásia e também na Europa.
Confirma mais detalhes sobre o estudo:

http://www.oriundi.net/files/PotentInhibitionofHumanPhosphodiesterase-5byIcariinDerivatives.pdf">PotentInhibitionofHumanPhosphodiesterase-5byIcariinDerivatives.pdf

Horny goat weed could be better than Viagra

The soft green heart-shaped leaf of the horny goat weed could hold the key to a new drug for treating erectile dysfunction. Researchers say the Viagra alternative could be as effective as the famous blue pill, but have fewer side-effects.

Mario Dell'Agli of the University of Milan, Italy, and colleagues tested four plants which are used as natural aphrodisiacs in traditional cultures to establish their potential as alternatives to Viagra.

Viagra's active compound, sildenafil, works by inhibiting an enzyme called phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE5). Because PDE5 helps control blood flow to the penis, inhibiting PDE5 promotes male erection.

Dell'Agli and his colleagues tested the four plants in vitro to see how efficient they were at inhibiting PDE5. Just one – Epimedium brevicornum, also known as horny goat weed and Bishop's Hat – had an effect. This confirmed previous studies showing that icariin, a compound found inside the horny goat weed, is a PDE5 inhibitor.

The fifth compound

Sildenafil, however, is 80 times more effective at inhibiting PDE5 than icariin. Dell'Agli and his team extracted icariin from the plants, and produced six modified versions of it, which they also tested on PDE5. The most efficient of these, compound 5, "works as well as Viagra", says Dell'Agli.

A drug made from compound 5 could also cause fewer side effects than Viagra.

In addition to PDE5, sildenafil affects other phosphodiesterases, including some that are essential to sight and heart function. As a result, people who have heart problems are not advised to take Viagra and patients who do take the drug sometimes suffer disturbances to their eyesight.

Preliminary tests suggest that compound 5 does not affect other phosphodiesterases, meaning it may not have the same side effects as Viagra.

Eat your weeds

Compound 5 will now have to go through lengthy clinical trials before it can be approved as a drug. It could be 10 years before it reaches the market.

In the meantime, "if people eat horny goat weed, I think it can be beneficial because it contains icariin," says Dell'Agli. "But it will not be as effective as Viagra."

Horny goat weed is found in the wild in China, Asia and Europe.

The research was supported by private funds, but Dell'Agli declined to provide details. (NewScientist - www.newscientist.com)

See more details:

http://www.oriundi.net/files/PotentInhibitionofHumanPhosphodiesterase-5byIcariinDerivatives.pdf">PotentInhibitionofHumanPhosphodiesterase-5byIcariinDerivatives.pdf



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