News

Selenium in times of immunity imperatives

Of those with pre-existing conditions, cancer patients are among those most vulnerable to SARS-CoV-2. It has been long known that this risk population also tends to have a higher incidence of deficiencies in micronutrients in general and selenium in particular. An insufficient nutritional status, in turn, worsens their prognosis. Indeed, a strong immune system helps fight infection and can destroy tumor cells. As a manufacturer of ethical pharmaceuticals, biosyn takes very seriously its commitment to improving everyone’s understanding of the immunological impact of the micronutrients it produces.

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Going bananas over nuts. How many is too many?

Some characters go crackers over cheese, some people are suckers for sweets or think candy is just dandy. But in the end, when you put that bowl of tasty nuts in front of most people, nobody can eat just one. In fact, it’s very hard to stop scarfing up the delicious, chewy tidbits. Nuts, especially Brazil nuts are highly nutritious, highly caloric and very rich in the trace element selenium. Indeed, they have the highest selenium concentrations of all other natural foods.

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Closing the selenium-thyroid gap during pregnancy: get the FAQs

What’s more important during a pandemic than making sure that mother and baby stay healthy? Especially in times of SARS-CoV-2, a litany of questions arise like “How can pregnant women protect themselves from getting COVID-19?”, “Are pregnant women more susceptible?”, “What are the unique risks in pregnant populations?” and many others.

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Coronavirus virulence and severity: Who is susceptible?

What is more harrowing than being trapped in a cruise ship, stuck on an airplane or in an airport possibly surrounded by people infected with a novel, highly contagious and potentially deadly virus? Misinformation and sensationalist reporting doesn’t help calm one’s fears. After public health authorities around the world declared the 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), a public health emergency, the level of international concern has grown. But what are the actual facts? How do I know if I am susceptible? What symptoms should I look out for and what will happen to me if I contract the disease?

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Viral virulence and selenium science: New folder with important facts

As ever in tune with the current issues surrounding the topic of all things selenium, biosyn has released a new folder containing solid facts on how this important trace element can impact the course of the lung disease COVID-19 caused by the new SARS-CoV-2. When exposed to infectious pathogens like the novel coronavirus, the adaptive immune defenses of most healthy individuals will kick in and effectively fight back any invading microbes. However, if the infected person’s immune system is weakened, it has difficulty preventing the virus from traveling to its target cells where it then wreaks havoc.

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biosyn scientist and KLH researcher Dr. Kay Büchler shares his story for World Cancer Day 2020

The theme of World Cancer Day 2020 is "I am and I will" to let individuals tell about how they are committed to act in preventing cancer. One of biosyn’s own has shared his story: "My name is Dr. Kay Büchler. I am 42 years old and work as a production manager in drug research and development. After my doctoral studies in biology, I wanted to work on research into something that is not just theory, but can be applied clinically and is effective. Something that makes an impact in real life and is ultimately used on real patients. I looked to data for my answer and chose a biotech company in the pharmaceutical industry that uses very large protein molecules from a natural living source to help treat cancer. Bladder cancer. The molecules that we extract non-lethally from the Californian Keyhole Limpet are purified to an active ingredient and instilled into the urinary bladder. Because they are so big and different from naturally occurring human proteins, they stop recurrence by stimulating the immune system to fight any tumor cells trying to grow back. This therapy lowers the growth rate and acts with few side effects."

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biosyn’s Keyhole Limpet shares its story

My name is Megathura crenulata and I live in the cold coastal waters of Southern California’s and Baja Mexico’s Pacific rim. I am a marine mollusk that gives of itself to beat cancer. Every now and then, divers swim by my habitat to collect me and my comrades for our work in the fight against cancer. They gently take us to the biosyn labs where we are kept in cooled metal basins. As a gastropod, what flows through my veins is not mammalian blood, but hemolymph. The scientists in the lab extract this from my single foot to make immunocyanin, a powerful vaccine instilled in the bladder for cancer recurrence.

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biosyn’s distribution partner country Panama also promoting cancer prevention awareness

In November 2019, the Panamanian Department of Pharmacy and Drugs approved another selenase® product for marketing in the country – one of the 27 countries around the world where biosyn products are sold. This peninsular-like country forms an important geographical link between the two big American continents. On the other side of the ocean, the German pharmaceutical manufacturer and Panama are yet now united in another way – to face the challenge of cancer.

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Selenium facts figure in your health: Every cell in everybody needs selenium

Number 34 on the periodic table, selenium sits below sulfur and above tellurium and adjacent to iodine. This metalloid is an essential trace element needed by every single cell. An adult human will have on average between 5 and 15 milligrams Se in their body. Individuals in countries like Poland, New Zealand and Germany where there is a geochemical dearth in the soil and forages tend to have lower selenium levels. Deficient dietary intake of selenium is the pathogenesis of diseases like Keshan’s cardiomyopathy prevalent in certain regions of China.

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Selenium geopolitics: biosyn covers a deficiency across borders.

Depending on local soil conditions, the dietary intake of the essential trace element selenium can vary greatly. Geographical, geological and geochemical factors often lead to a clinically relevant deficiency in selenium. In many countries like Germany where soil is selenium-poor, individuals commonly suffer from too low selenium levels. These individuals are at risk of adverse effects to health. Selenium deficiency may also be a sign of other clinical disorders, can make certain viruses more virulent, is associated with weakened immunity, cardiomyopathy, thyroid problems and even reduced sperm production. To help, lab workups can determine a person’s selenium status and whether selenium supplementation is required. This would be the case if levels are < 80 μg/L in the serum or < 100 μg/L in whole blood. If the selenium test reveals a deficiency, the health insurance in some countries may pay for the selenium prescription.

biosyn’s CEO explains how the company’s keyhole limpet hemocyanin helps fight recurrences in superficial bladder cancer

In the early 1990s, the team of researchers around Dr. Thomas Stiefel, CEO of the pharmaceutical company biosyn, discovered that a unique sea creature living in the cold waters off Southern California’s Pacific coastline can provide a substance for use in cancer therapy. Keyhole limpet hemocyanin (KLH), an immunostimulating glycoprotein, is obtained by a non-lethal method from the hemolymph of the keyhole limpet (Megathura crenulata).

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Immunosenescence, immunocompetence, resilience and robustness: Weaponize your immune system with KIMUN® from biosyn

New research on the biology of aging confirms the need to boost the immune system in the elderly. 

As we grow old, muscle mass and mobility decline as does the function of organs like the spleen and thymus that are responsible for the body’s immunity. Our immune system loses its strength and its ability to perform - a condition called immunosenescence. As a result, the elderly become more susceptible to infection and geriatric diseases and the aging process may even be accelerated.

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Different countries, different risks. Selenium deficiency-related heart disease depends on where one lives. That’s another reason why monitoring is so important.

Keshan disease is a cardiovascular condition related to selenium deficiency. It occurs mostly in China, where some soils are extremely selenium deficient. In Europe, many geographical regions are selenium deficient. Poor selenium status is related to the risk of heart disease and cardiovascular death. This especially applies to the elderly. Improved selenium status can reduce the risk of coronary artery disease. 

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When sepsis strikes, it’s important to act fast. Nurse-led management is proving key for hematology-oncology patients.

Well-trained nurses and guideline compliance are critical factors in any clinical routine, but especially important when hematology-oncology patients develop septic crises. In neutropenic patients, one of the first signs of sepsis is elevated temperature. Fast action is required at fever onset. Timely administration of antibiotics is critical to many variables on ICUs like reduced complications, hospital stay and improved survival. A recent study on sepsis management is proving how nurse-led sepsis management may prevent septic complications and improve survival.

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Tiny at birth, XL potential. Babies thrive on a healthy oxidative balance in utero

In early pregnancy, placental oxygen is very low, but increases significantly during gestation. Too high an oxygen content can lead to oxidative stress from reactive oxygen species (ROS) and damage fetal cells. This imbalance is associated with premature birth, impaired cognitive and motor development in the baby and preeclampsia, postpartum depression and hypothyroidism in the mother. Selenium is important for protecting both mother and baby against oxidative stress.

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Flagship folder: From analgesics to vitamins – a compilation of biosyn products for the global market

In addition to its blockbuster selenase®, biosyn offers many other highly efficacious preparations ranging from pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals through antidotes and biomodulators to opioid analgesics. The indications vary accordingly: medicinal products for treating nutritional deficiencies caused by diseases, pregnancy, vegetarianism, thyroid problems or cytotoxic therapies. biosyn’s mineral and food supplements are indicated to prevent such deficiencies, while promoting general health.

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Hope is the color blue. The unique IMMUCOTHEL® from the keyhole limpet indicated for the prevention of superficial bladder cancer recurrence.

What to do when the standard fails? Wasn't it enough that the patient suffered from superficial bladder cancer and now a post-TUR recurrence? After standard therapies were contraindicated, have been exhausted or were not tolerated in the first place, second-line treatment with IMMUCOTHEL® is indicated to prevent recurrences in superficial bladder cancer. This immunotherapeutic from biosyn is a safe, efficacious and well-established alternative to BCG. Thanks to its high tolerability and low rate of side effects, patients experience much less distress with IMMUCOTHEL®.

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Over 200 years of biochemical history

Since its discovery by Berzelius in 1817, knowledge about the importance of selenium keeps growing. Thanks to knowledge gained by the recent decades’ advancements in medical science, much has changed over the past centuries in terms of how we view micronutrients and their function in preventing and curing illness. It took 140 years before the discovery of selenium led to the recognition that it is essential for human life. Now, evidence on the benefits of supplementation with this antioxidant in a multitude of diseases keeps mounting at an ever-faster pace. Selenium deficiency is associated with an increased risk for cancer, immunodeficiency, osteoporosis, cardiovascular and thyroid diseases

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They say, there’s no cure for the common cold:

Not to brag, but our micronutrient Zinkotase® can help prevent or shorten the duration of this catarrhal disorder.  The common cold – an enduring enigma that has plagued humankind for ages. As the old saying goes, a cold lasts a week if you go to the doctor and seven days if you don’t. Joking aside, evidence shows that if you take the trace element zinc, the duration of your cold will be shorter and many of its symptoms alleviated.

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