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Biobran/MGN-3, an arabinoxylan rice bran, enhances NK cell activity in geriatric subjects: A randomized, double‐blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial

  • AHMED F. ELSAID, MAGDA SHAHEEN and MAMDOOH GHONEUM
  • 2018

Aging is associated with a decline in natural killer (NK) and natural killer T (NKT) cell function that may contribute to increased susceptibility to malignancy and infection. A preliminary investigation was conducted examining the hypothesis that arabinoxylan rice bran (Biobran/MGN‐3), a denatured hemicellulose with known immunomodulatory activity, could counteract this decline in NK/NKT cell activity in geriatrics. A total of 12 healthy geriatric subjects of both sexes and over 56 years old, participated in a randomized, double‐blind, placebo‐controlled clinical trial. A total of six subjects served as control and six subjects ingested Biobran/MGN‐3 (500 mg/day) for 30 days. The effect of  Biobran/MGN‐3 supplementation on NK/NKT cell activity was assessed using the degranulation assay. All study subjects were monitored for the development of any inadvertent side effects. In addition, the pharmacological effects of Biobran/MGN‐3 on blood cell components and liver and kidney functions were also assessed. Results demonstrated that Biobran/MGN‐3 had no effect on the total percentage of NK cells, however it enhanced the cytotoxic activity of  induced NK cell expression of cluster of differentiation 107a, when compared with baseline values and with the placebo group (P<0.05). Furthermore, there were no side effects observed, indicating that Biobran/MGN‐3  supplementation was safe at the utilized dosage and for the duration of administration. Various additional beneficial effects were observed, including improved mean corpuscular volume and reduced hepatic aspartate aminotransferase enzyme levels, which suggested improved liver function. It was concluded that Biobran/MGN‐3 induces a significant increase in NK activity which may increase resistance to viral infections and cancers in the geriatric population.  However, additional clinical trials should be conducted in the future to verify these findings. 

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