The Effect of Garlic Powder on Human Urinary Cytokine Excretion
Purpose: A number of therapeutic benefits of garlic, including immunostimulatory effects, inhibition of carcinogenesis and prevention of infection, have been reported in experimental and clinical trials. We aimed to evaluate the effects of orally administered dehydrated garlic powder on cytokine excretion in the urinary tract.
Materials and Methods: A total of 60 healthy volunteers, randomized into 3 groups, were given a single oral dose of 1 g or 3 g of dehydrated garlic powder or placebo. Urine samples were obtained 0, 6 and 24 h after garlic intake and assayed for interleukin-8 (IL-8), interleukin-12 (IL-12), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), diallyl disulfide (DADS) and diallyl sulfide (DAS).
Since ancient times, garlic has been used as a phytopharmaceutical agent and a dietary supplement. Ancient Egyptian documents dating to 1550 AD describe oral and topical use of garlic as a remedy for tumors. Since the 1950s, the scientific basis of garlic’s medicinal effects has been partially elucidated by studies demonstrating that thiosulfate extracts from garlic inhibited tumor growth in sarcomas. In a rat model of intravesical transitional cell carcinoma, intravesical aqueous garlic extract instillation enhanced local lymphocyte and macrophage responses and inhibited macroscopic tumor growth. In addition, a reduction of tumor volume was reported in a rat model when garlic extract was administered orally.
Attempts to elucidate the mechanisms responsible for the antitumor effects of garlic revealed that the component diallyl disulphide (DADS) induces apoptosis through caspase-3 activity. DADS and DAS also inhibited N-acetyl-transferase activity in the T-24 human bladder cancer cell line(5, 6).
To our knowledge, the cytokine response in the human urinary tract after oral intake of garlic has not been documented. We assessed garlic’s immune potency by monitoring urinary cytokine excretion following administration of oral garlic supplements to healthy subjects.
Materials and Methods
After receiving approval from the institutional ethics committee, a total of 60 healthy volunteers, comprised of 34 male participants and 26 female participants between 20 and 40 years of age were enrolled in this study.
Preparation of garlic powder
Denuded fresh garlic was frozen at -700 C in a lyophilizer and dried under a vacuum. The resulting dried garlic was blended in a blender until it was ground into a fine powder. From approximately 8.75 g of denuded raw garlic, 1 g of dried powder was obtained. On a precise scale, powder aliquots weighing 1 g and 3 g were allocated to individual packets. On the study day, the content of each packet was thawed and placed in caches, which wer milar to those of the placebo (flour).