NEW YORKResearch on Setria® glutathione (GSH) from Kyowa Hakko USA shows an oral GSH supplement can strengthen immune systems in a healthy adult population. (European Journal of Nutrition. 2014 May 5. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 24791752)
The results the study, led by John P. Richie of Penn State University, showed that supplementation of glutathione doubled natural killer (NK) cell activity. NK cells are vital to immune health because they play a major role in the body's rejection of damaged or infected cells. Additionally, NK cells play an important role in protecting the body from viral infections.
The trial measured effect of glutathione supplementation at 250 mg/d and 1000 mg/d on glutathione levels in different blood components and exfoliated buccal mucosal cells over a six month period. The subjects included 54 healthy adults (41 females and 13 males), 28 to 72 years old.
A recent consumer survey by Kyowa Hakko USA indicated only 16 percent of consumers would give their immune systems an "A" grade, leaving 84 percent of consumers looking for ways to support their less-than-perfect body defenses. A similar number (83 percent) of consumers believe there are things they can do proactively to help boost their immune health. The results of the new research validate those 83 percent, and further prove that glutathione is a proven fortification option for those consumers looking for ways to strengthen their immune systems.
Results of Kyowa Hakko’s recent study showed glutathione levels in the blood increased after one, three and six months compared to baseline at both doses. At six months, mean glutathione levels increased 30 to 35 percent in erythrocytes, plasma and lymphocytes, and 260 percent in buccal cells in the high dose group (P<0.05). Glutathione levels increased 17 and 29 percent in blood and erythrocytes, respectively, in the low dose group (P<0.05), and natural killer cytotoxicity increased two fold in the high-dose group versus placebo at 3 months. A reduction in oxidative stress in both glutathione dose groups was indicated by decreases in the oxidized to reduced glutathione ratio in whole blood after 6 months.
According to the study, the effects of glutathione supplementation on the levels of the glutathione precursor cysteine in plasma and the activity of the rate-limiting glutathione biosynthetic enzyme GCL in erythrocytes were examined after the six-month study period. No changes were observed in cyst(e)ine concentrations or GCL activity in any of the groups.
In addition to its immune benefits, glutathione is known to work in the body to eliminate toxic chemicals, maintain cell proteins, act as an antioxidant,and maintain proper levels of vitamins C and E. While it is considered the body's "master antioxidant," factors such as age, medication intake, health conditions, lifestyle, diet, weight and even time of day, can all outpace the body's natural production of glutathione. For more information, check out INSIDER’s Glutathione Digital Issue.