This article out of Mount Sinai School of Medicine reviews studies in lab animals of GSPE (grape seed-derived polyphenolic extracts) in the treatment of tauopathies such as PSP, CBD, and AD. My impression is that most of the studies reviewed were done by researchers at Mount Sinai School of Medicine!
The researchers note: “Recent studies from our laboratory reveal that grape seed-derived polyphenolic extracts (GSPE) potently prevent tau fibrillization into neurotoxic aggregates and therapeutically promote the dissociation of preformed tau aggregates.”
The abstract indicates that this research team “initiated a series of studies exploring the role of GSPE (Meganatural-Az® GSPE) as a potential novel botanical drug for the treatment of certain forms of tauopathies including PSP…”
You can find more information on this product from this website promoting it:
They say they have FDA GRAS status (generally recognized as safe). This simply means the FDA views the chemical as safe, not that the FDA has approved of it as a drug that can be used for certain medical conditions. The disclosure section of the article indicates: “Drs. Pasinetti, Wang and Ho are named inventors of a pending patent application filed by Mount Sinai School of Medicine (MSSM) for grape seed polyphenolic extract.”
I assumed GSPE was the same thing as resveratrol. According to the article, “no detectable resveratrol is found in Meganatural-Az® GSPE.”
I couldn’t glean much about the “series of studies” in PSP. I don’t know if these are all biochemistry studies done in petri dishes or studies using lab animals. Some human studies must be going on as well because the article says: “Tolerability and dose escalation studies in PSP subjects are presently underway in our Institution, and will provide fundamental information for the characterization of appropriate doses of Meganatural-Az® GSPE in the treatment of PSP.”
The authors state: “In conclusion, our studies tentatively support the hypothesis, for the first time, that certain forms of bioavailable polyphenolic compounds in Meganatural-Az® GSPE may promote tau anti-oligomerization activities in the brain, ultimately delaying clinical PSP onset, and possibly therapeutically attenuating the clinical progression of PSP and other tauopathies.”
If anyone looks into this further, please share!
Journal of Neurochemistry. 2010 Jun 20. [Epub ahead of print]
Development of a grape seed polyphenolic extract with anti-oligomeric activity as a novel treatment in progressive supranuclear palsy and other tauopathies.
Pasinetti GM, Ksiezak-Reding H, Santa-Maria I, Wang J, Ho L.
Center of Excellence for Novel Approaches to Neurodiagnostics and Neurotherapeutics, Brain Institute, Center of Excellence for Research in Complementary and Alternative Medicine in Alzheimer’s Disease, Department of Neurology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY.
A diverse group of neurodegenerative diseases – including progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), corticobasal degeneration (CBD) and Alzheimer’s disease (AD) among others, collectively referred to as tauopathies – are characterized by progressive, age-dependent intracellular formations of misfolded protein aggregates that play key roles in the initiation and progression of neuropathogenesis.
Recent studies from our laboratory reveal that grape seed-derived polyphenolic extracts (GSPE) potently prevent tau fibrillization into neurotoxic aggregates and therapeutically promote the dissociation of preformed tau aggregates (Ho et al., 2009).
Based on our extensive bioavailability, bioactivity and functional pre-clinical studies, combined with the safety of GSPE in laboratory animals and in humans, we initiated a series of studies exploring the role of GSPE (Meganatural-Az((R)) GSPE) as a potential novel botanical drug for the treatment of certain forms of tauopathies including PSP, a neurodegenerative disorder involving the accumulation and deposition of misfolded tau proteins in the brain characterized, in part, by abnormal intracellular tau inclusions in specific anatomical areas involving astrocytes, oligodendrocytes and neurons (Takahashi et al., 2002).
In this mini-review article, we discuss the biochemical characterization of GSPE in our laboratory and its potential preventative and therapeutic role in model systems of abnormal tau processing pertinent to PSP and related tauopathies.
PubMed ID#: 20569300 (see pubmed.gov for this abstract)