Published in the February issue of BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, the study, “A Double-Blind, Randomized Clinical Trial of Dietary Supplementation on Cognitive and Immune Functioning in Healthy Older Adults,” demonstrated several significant and isolated improvements with two dietary supplements — Ginkgo Synergy plus choline and OPC Synergy plus Catalyn.
Using the globally recognized TMT-B time score assessment, which detects impairment in many cognitive areas, study participants who took the Ginkgo Synergy plus choline formula, a combination of Ginkgo biloba leaf and grape seed extract, showed improvements (68 percent) after three months. Additionally, those who took OPC Synergy plus Catalyn, a mix of grape seed and red wine extract, green tea, and bilberry fruit, were tested using the COWA Trial-S score, a key tool in neuropsychological testing, and showed an 11 percent improvement at three months. Epidermal growth factor, which is believed to be involved in cell proliferation and oncogenesis, significantly decreased (57 percent) from baseline to six months follow-up for the Ginkgo Synergy plus choline arm. The products were safe, and no serious adverse events were reported.
The findings, though similar to other studies that showed improvements with Ginkgo biloba-based formulae, appear to be the first to include important information on signaling molecules that control the activities of cells through intercellular communication.
“Our study may be one of the first of its kind to assess a panel of cytokines and growth factors before and after dietary supplementation in healthy older adults,” Lewis wrote. “Furthermore, our findings may lend support for the pursuit of anti-epidermal growth factor therapy, not only for preventing cancer or disrupting carcinogenesis, but for decreasing the negative impact on cognitive functioning.”
Other authors of the study are medical student Angelica B. Melillo, M.P.H.; Eduard Tiozzo, Ph.D., exercise physiologist and postdoctoral research associate; Lawrence Chen, M.B.A., R.N.; Susanna Leonard; Mark Howell, manager of fitness operations at the Medical Wellness Center; Janelle Diaz, medical student; Kathy Gonzalez; Judi M. Woolger, M.D., assistant professor of clinical medicine; Janet Konefal, Ph.D., M.P.H., associate professor of family medicine and community health; Elaine Paterson, Ph.D., clinical research manager, and David Barnes, Ph.D., research director, both from whole food supplement manufacturer Standard Process, Inc.
University of Miami