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Live Protein Therapy
in the Management of Liver Disease
by Thomas Bayne, DC


Liver disease is the third leading disease-related cause of death for Americans aged 25-59. Hepatitis and cirrhosis are particularly common liver disorders that are part of the degenerative cascade of liver disease that starts with inflammation and swelling and develops into fatty degeneration, cirrhosis, and cancer.1   Two live protein extracts are regularly employed in treating liver disease: thymus proteins are used to increase the hosts’ resistance and are responsible for cell-mediated immunity, and liver proteins to improve the regenerative capabilities of the liver.   Researchers have recently indicated Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF), as one of the many proteins and growth factors found in the liquid liver extract.    Clinical applications of HGF represent an exciting new direction in the treatment of liver disease.  This article will define the disorders and discuss treatments using biologically active proteins such as HGF found in liver extract, combined with thymus gland proteins, to modulate immune response, stimulate liver regeneration, accelerate hepatic function, reverse fibrosis and cirrhosis.

Hepatitis is defined as an inflammation of the liver that is associated with cellular damage or death of the liver cell.   There are two forms of hepatitis: acute hepatitis, which is typically self-limiting, and chronic hepatitis, which may be benign but sometimes develops into progressive liver damage often leading to cirrhosis, hepatic failure and death.2 Symptoms of hepatitis include extreme fatigue, loss of appetite, weight loss, fever, nausea, and vomiting.   Dark urine typically appears within 3-10 days and is followed by a yellowing of the skin, called jaundice.  Jaundice takes 7-10 days to develop and 2-4 weeks to fade away.  The liver is usually enlarged and tender to palpation.  The most common cause of hepatitis is contamination by virus. The American liver foundation identifies five different viruses that cause hepatitis: the A, B, C, D and E viruses.

Hepatitis A is usually a benign self-limiting disease that accounts for 20-25% of the cases of acute hepatitis.2   It does not cause chronic hepatitis or a carrier state and so the fatality rate is about 0.1%.3    Hepatitis B (HBV) can produce an asymptomatic carrier state, acute hepatitis, chronic hepatitis, progression of chronic disease to cirrhosis, and/or fulminant hepatitis with massive liver necrosis.2   HBV also plays a prominent role in the progression of hepatocellular carcinoma.   Hepatitis C (HCV) is mostly transfusion-associated with as many as 60% of acute HCV infections progressing to chronic hepatitis.   HCV is responsible for at least 30% of the cases of fulminant viral hepatitis.4    Hepatitis D only develops when there is concomitant hepatitis B infection and is relatively uncommon in the United States.2   Hepatitis E (HEV) is responsible for large epidemics of acute hepatitis in Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and Mexico. Chronic hepatitis E infection has not been observed, accounting for the low death rate due to HEV.  However, HEV has a 25% death rate in pregnant females.5


Allopathic Treatment of Hepatitis

Modern medical treatment consists of interferon alfa-2b, recombinant alone or in combination with Rebavirin.  Side effects from these medications include muscle aches, yeast infections, anemia, seizures, brain fog, autoimmune reactions, hypersensitivity reactions (allergic reactions, asthma) osteoporosis, deterioration of cardiac function, coronary disease, diabetes mellitus, and severe psychiatric symptoms such as depression and suicidal behavior.   Rebavirin is so dangerous to a developing fetus that women of childbearing age must show proof of 2 forms of acceptable birth control before they are given a prescription.

 

Holistic Treatment of Hepatitis

Diet

A whole foods diet that is low in protein will minimize stress on the liver. An elimination of refined flours and sugars, caffeine, and alcohol is crucial. Vegetable broths and juices should be emphasized with particular attention to spirulina, chlorella, wheat grass juice, and barley juice. A minimum of 4 glasses of water for every 50lbs of body weight should be consumed daily.


Live Protein Therapy

The liver injury in HBV infection is due to an immune mediated host reaction to the infection and not the infection per se.6 In one HBV study, thymus extract was used to modulate immune mediated reactions.  Eighteen patients with biopsy-confirmed hepatitis B and lowered T4/T8 ratio were split into two groups and received thymic extract for 6 and 12 months respectively.   There was a normalization of both biochemical and immunological markers within 6 months of beginning treatment.  Laboratory markers revealed a complete cessation of viral replication, which implies remission.7    Two-year follow-up showed continued remission with normal immunological and biochemical panels. A similar study on a larger patient group produced similar findings and conclusions.8   The use of Liver extract and more specifically Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF) has demonstrated the ability to accelerate hepatic function.9    One hepatitis study showed that HGF stimulated the regeneration of hepatocytes under inflammatory conditions such as hepatitis B and C.10

Liver extract has also demonstrated remarkable results in the treatment of chronic hepatitis.  A double-blind study was conducted that involved 556 patients with chronic hepatitis.   One group was given 70mg of liver hydrosylate three times per day and the other group placebo three times per day.  At the end of three months of treatment the group receiving the liver extract had far lower liver enzyme levels.   Since the levels of the enzymes in the blood reflect damage to the liver, it was concluded that the liver extract is effective in the treatment of hepatitis through its ability to improve the function of damaged liver cells and to prevent further damage to the liver.11

Cirrhosis is a category of chronic liver disease associated with interconnecting fibrous scars that eventually lead to parenchymal nodules that create further damage and scarring eventually developing arteriovenous interconnections.  Symptoms appear such as mild fatigue, indigestion, constipation or diarrhea and skin rashes.  These are followed by abdominal swelling, pain, vomiting of blood and jaundice.  Advanced cases lead to coma and eventually death.  Researchers recently discovered that the scar tissue associated with cirrhosis is not permanent and in fact is actually reversible.12   The following protocol has demonstrated the ability to reverse cirrhosis.


Treatment of Cirrhosis

Diet

A whole foods diet such as the one recommended for hepatitis should be closely followed. Colon cleansing is also important to decrease the load of endotoxins in the circulation.


Live Protein Therapy

Radchenko et al. successfully treated 102 patients with chronic hepatitis and primary biliary cirrhosis with thymus extracts.   The results showed a significant increase in immune competence, which helped control the immunoinflammatory process in the liver and normalized the clinical manifestation of the disease leading to a favorable outcome.13

HGF has also shown great clinical potential in the treatment of cirrhosis in animal models.  The antiapoptotic activity of HGF in hepatocytes14 is of particular interest pertaining to the process of cirrhosis.  In addition, HGF was a potent stimulator of DNA synthesis in primary hepatocytes.9,15 These important results demonstrate successful treatment of a very difficult disease that typically has a very unfavorable outcome.


Hepatitis Case Study

A.L. presented with a history of hepatitis C infection that was contracted after a blood transfusion in 1980.  A liver biopsy in 1996 confirmed chronic hepatitis C.  The patient’s medical doctor told him that he had three to five years to live.  A.L. was searching for “palliative care” to “make the last few years of my life as comfortable as possible” when we began therapy.  A comprehensive program was implemented that included dietary modifications combined with live thymus proteins, live liver proteins, and detoxification therapies.  Concurrently, a solution-focused psychotherapeutic approach aimed at increasing coping and managing emotional fear and distress was implemented.

For the first month of care A.L. took three Natcell Thymus, and one Natcell Liver per week. After four weeks of care A.L. reported a marked increase in energy levels, and general improvement in overall well-being.  Months two through four A.L. took two Natcell Thymus per week and one Natcell Liver every two weeks.  Over the next six months the dosage was slowly decreased to one Natcell Thymus every two weeks and one Natcell Liver per month.  Reports from his psychotherapist indicated that his mindset was changing from a hopeless helpless posture to a hopeful and optimistic mindset.  At the end of the 10-month period A.L. was given a complete clean bill of health.   There was no sign of viral infection in his body.

For the next two months a heavy program of Natcell liver combined with coffee enemas was introduced to further rebuild and rejuvenate the liver. In the first month A.L. took two Natcell Liver per week and performed three coffee enemas per week.  The second month consisted of one Natcell Liver per week and two coffee enemas per week. Twelve months after therapy had begun, A.L had gained 20lbs of lean muscle. He has integrated a mind-body appreciation for his new health; he has adopted a new philosophy on life and remains healthy to this day.  He remains on a maintenance dose of one Natcell Liver every six weeks and one Natcell Thymus every eight weeks.


Cirrhosis Case Study

R.R presented with a recent diagnosis of liver cirrhosis.    Patient’s medical history included a bout of hepatitis B while in Vietnam, a 25-year history of alcoholism, and I.V. drug use for two years in the 1970’s.  The patient was referred by his psychiatrist.  His psychiatric profile included severe depression related to post traumatic stress disorder.  Again, appreciating the mind-body connection and the importance of an integrative holistic approach, R.R. was seen concurrently for psychotherapy.  Psychotherapy consisted of treatment that utilized Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) to decrease intrusive flashbacks, negative fear based cognitions and physiological reactivity.   The patient was started on a whole foods diet with a focus on cereal grasses and other liver strengthening foods.   Live protein therapy was initiated with Natcell Liver taken twice a week and Natcell Thymus taken once per week for two months.  Over the next six months R.R. continued with a dose of one Natcell Liver per week and one Natcell Thymus per week.  Laboratory follow-up after eight months of therapy showed an increase in T-lymphocytes, and decreased immunoglobulin counts.  Although R.R remains in a constant struggle both physically and mentally, his overall level of improvement is an amazing tribute to the body’s ability to heal itself when the mind and body are treated in an integrated manner.  With the continued mind-body therapy and support of his family, R.R. will continue to improve and someday lead a normal life.


Conclusion

Live protein therapy represents a viable treatment option in the management of liver disease. Although Organotherapy is by no means a new concept, our understanding of the science behind the mechanism of action is beginning to become clearer. Clinically, I have witnessed results that warrant further research. My approach is patient-specific and my treatment philosophy requires balance between the physical, biochemical, emotional and electromagnetic systems. I have used Natcell Thymus and Natcell Liver in the management of liver disease as part of a comprehensive treatment protocol for more than 5 years. My results have been consistent and reproducible. The Natcell line of products are available from Atrium Biotechnologies, Inc. of Quebec City, Canada.

Correspondence:
Dr. Thomas Bayne, D.C.
Northbrook, Illinois 60062 USA

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References

1. Babal, K., Reversing Liver Damage, Nutrition Science News, 2(10), 1997, 508-512

2. Cotran, R., Kumar, V., Robbins, S., 4th Edition Robbins Pathological Basis of Disease, W.B. Saunders Co., 1989.

3. Lesnicar, G., A prospective study of viral hepatitis A and the question of chronicity. Hepatogastroenterology 35:69, 1988

4. Bernuau, J., et al.: Fulminant and subfulminant liver failure: definitions and causes. Semin. Liver Dis. 6:97, 1986

5. Aggarwal, R., Krawczynski, Hepatitis E: an overview and recent advances in clinical and laboratory research. J Gastroenterol Hepatol, Jan 2000, 15(1): 9-20

6. Berkow, R., Fletcher, A., The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy; 15th edition. Merck Research Laboratories, Rathway, N.J. 1987, p.905

7. Dworniak, D., et al. Treatment with thymic extract TFX for chronic active hepatitis B. Archivum Immunologiae et Therapiae Experimentalis. 1991, 39(5-6): 537

8. Zeman, K., et al. Effect of thymic extract on allogeneic MLR and mitogen-induced responses in patients with chronic active hepatitis B. Immunological Investigations. 1991 Dec, 20(7): 545.

9. Kaido, T., et al. Portal branch ligation with a continuous hepatocyte growth factor supply makes extensive hepatectomy possible in cirrhotic rats. Hepatology, 1998 Sep; 28(3): 756-60

10. Ohnishi, T., et al. Effect of phosphorylated rat fetuin on the growth of hepatocytes in primary culture in the presence of human hepatocyte-growth factor. Evidence that phosphorylated fetuin is a natural modulator of hepatocyte growth factor. Eur J Biochem 1997 Feb 1; 243(3): 753-61

11. Fujisawa, K., et al, Therapeutic effects of liver hydrosylate preparation on chronic hepatitis-A double blind, controlled study. Asian Med J 26,497-526, 1984

12. Freidman, Rockey, Maher. Presentation at the 50th annual meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease. Oct. 1999.

13. Radchenko, VG et al. The efficacy of immunomodulating preparations in treating patients with chronic cholestatic liver diseases. Vrachebnoe Delo. 1992 Nov-Dec, (11-12):38

14. Ueki, T., et al. Hepatocyte growth factor gene therapy of liver cirrhosis in rats. Nat Med 1999 Feb; 5(2):226-30

15. Kaido, T., et al. Perioperative continuous hepatocyte growth factor supply prevents postoperative liver failure in rats with liver cirrhosis. J Surg Res 1998 Feb 1;74(2):173-8

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