Early evidence shows that neem tree extracts may stop the HIV from multiplying. The neem tree of India is known as the “village pharmacy,” used for a wide range of health issues. These curative properties may fight the fighting the virus that causes AIDS.
The results seem to indicate that there are compounds in neem extracts that target a protein essential for HIV to replicate. If further studies support these findings, this could be a breakthrough for new HIV and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) therapies.
Neem: A Best Herbal Medicine for Several Health Porblems
- Extracts from neem leaves, bark and flowers are used throughout the Indian subcontinent to fight against pathogenic bacteria and fungi.
- Tree branches are used instead of toothpaste and toothbrushes to keep teeth and gums healthy.
- Neem extracts are used to control the spread of malaria.
- In Ayurvedic medicine, neem extracts are used to help treat heart disease and control diabetes.
What helped spur the research were two reports that showed that when HIV-AIDS patients in Nigeria and India were given neem extracts, the amount of HIV particles in their blood dropped. Intrigued, researcher Sonia Arora decided to see if she could figure out what was in the neem extract that seemed to fight off the virus.
From the literature, the researchers identified 20 compounds present in various types of neem extracts. When they modeled these compounds against the proteins critical for the HIV life-cycle, Arora and her team discovered that most of the neem compounds attacked the HIV proteins. And, thereby, it would seem to halt the virus from multiplying.
Next up for this group are test-tube experiments to see if the computer models hold up with actual samples. They are very hopeful that the mostly unknown neem tree will provide a cheaper and more accessible way to fight the HIV-AIDS epidemic in developing countries. There, current therapies are priced at levels out of reach for many people.
Also of great importance: what other immune-related diseases could be influenced by this amazing Ayurvedic herb? Stay tuned.