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Prenatal toxicity linked to immune dysfunctions in later life

meeting in Charlotte, N.C. "Instead, we looked at the common immune dysfunction that is related to a host of diseases."

Knowing the most common immune dysfunction patterns from DIT allows researchers to consider more seriously those "medicinals with the capacity to restore inflammatory cell regulation, promote dendritic cell maturation and restore desirable Th balance that would be the most likely candidates to combat the problems resulting from DIT."

Focusing on studies of herbal and fungal chemicals, the Dieterts scoured the literature and found that some of the chemicals appear to be particularly promising when taken at appropriate doses. These include: Astragalus; Echinacea (purple coneflower); sang-hwang shiitake, reishi, maitake and snake butter mushrooms, black seed, Asian ginseng, milk vetch root, wild yam, Sophoro root and Greek clover (all of these also go by various other names).

In their paper, the Dieterts also list a multitude of substances that have been found to have "an uncertain impact" on DIT as well as several found to exacerbate immune dysfunction (including marijuana).

"We hope that these findings of persistent immune dysfunction from gestational exposure will provide encouragement for additional research. Furthermore, that researchers will look at these categories of medicines that have the possibility of correcting inflammatory and immune balance problems resulting from DIT rather than focusing solely on individual disease symptoms," Rodney Dietert said.

He noted that until recently toxin-testing guidelines predicted only risk in adults, but that the Environmental Protection Agency has announced it will issue new guidelines to take into account the increased immune sensitivity of fetuses and young children.


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Contact: Sabina Lee
SSL37@cornell.edu
607-255-3024
Cornell University News Service
2-May-2007


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