Natural killer (Immune) cells may become glutathione-depleted over time, and immune response weakens. When Immunocal® raises glutathione levels the immune system is strengthened to fight cancer, viruses, bacteria, etc. For those patients receiving traditional medical therapy for their cancers, Immunocal® supplies lactalbumin which has been clinically proven to raise glutathione levels.
There are lots of research abstracts and articles to show that glutathione and lactalbumin (a component of Immunocal®) have been associated with the strengthening of healthy cells and (paradoxically) the weakening of cancerous cells.
Great strides have been made by other companies and in research since Immunotec Research first developed Immunocal®. In research conducted by C. Svanborg et al, lactalbumin was associated with apoptosis (or the programmed death) of cancer cells. Glutathione has been scientifically demonstrated to decrease cancerous cells' resistance to chemotherapeutic drugs, while protecting healthy cells. This would theoretically allow a patient to respond better to chemotherapy with less side effects.
Immunocal® has been clinically demonstrated to increase exercise capacity by 13 percent (Lands et al., 1999), and may be useful as a supplement for competitive athletes.
Wattanabe et al. (Japan) conducted a clinical study with Immunocal® to evaluate increases in GSH among patients with Hepatitis B and C, and found that these viruses are vulnerable to glutathione. In-vitro studies in Japan also showed that whey can stimulate the bone cell (osteoblasts) to produce more bone, hence increasing bone density and reducing the risk of osteoporosis.
Lactalbumin from whey protein has been demonstrated to kill breast cancer cells in vitro (in a test-tube). Glutathione (from whey protein) lowers serum cholesterol by stimulating bile synthesis in the liver. In addition, glutathione is a powerful antioxidant that will prevent lipid peroxidation (a sign of free radical activity). Lipid peroxidation is implicated in arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), stroke and coronary artery disease.
In the manufacturing of other whey proteins several things occur: in the process of heating and Pasteurization, critical bonds holding the cystine together get broken down ("denatured", meaning they loose their original nature--similar to the denaturing and irreversible changing of liquid egg white by the heating process involved in frying an egg). The exact type of proteins that serve to increase tissue and serum glutathione most effectively are lost or diminished. The researchers at Immunotec (the manufacturers of Immunocal®) have developed a process by which these delicate proteins remain intact in their natural form to serve us most effectively.
The proteins in colostrum have almost no cystine content. Cystine is critically essential to the immune system. Although Growth Factors present in colostrum (including IGF-1, or Insulin-like growth Factor-1 which is effective in promoting muscle growth) are not affected by stomach acid, research published by one manufacturer of Colostrum (Vital Health News, Winter 1998, page 7) demonstrated that "the effectiveness of the immune factors present in colostrum is lowered by stomach acid."
Although the immune enhancing factors found in colostrum are often "preferable to single isolated immune components" (such as interferon, which is more likely to cause troublesome side effects), colostrum has NOT been demonstrated to be superior to isolated undenatured whey proteins such as Immunocal®. Colostrum (which is produced during the first 26 hours following birth by the mammary glands) is primarily composed of immunoglobulin and some lactoferrin. According to both laboratory experiments and clinical trials conducted in Germany, although colostrum supplementation was associated with mild increases in immune function in some patients, these increases were not statistically significant, (p=ns).
A postulated mechanism of action of colostrum is the inter-species transfer of immune factors, however this has NOT been clinically proven. Most of the data supporting the effectiveness of colostrum is anecdotal (consisting mostly of personal testimonies rather than clinical studies). Since the primary mechanism of action on the immune system is via stimulation of the synthesis (production) of glutathione, the near absence of glutathione precursors in the immunoglobulin fraction (from the colostrum) may explain its relative lack of effect.
Conversely, Immunocal® contains substantial amounts of thermolabile (heat-sensitive) proteins that are rich in cystine and glutamylcystine (known precursors of glutathione), and the effectiveness of Immunocal® has been demonstrated in numerous human clinical trials which found statistically significant increases in glutathione and indices of immune function (such as CD4:CD8 ratios). Colostrum might be beneficial as an adjunctive (add-on) therapy to Immunocal®, but the clinical data is significantly more convincing for Immunocal®.
N Acetyl L-Cysteine (NAC) is sulfur-containing (sulfhydryl) amino acid which is present in many proteins, and is in the same class as the amino acid methionine. NAC is a naturally occurring amino sugar and is a form of cysteine which has been demonstrated to facilitate the SHORT TERM cellular detoxification of alcohol, tobacco smoke, acetaminophen [Tylenol®] poisoning and environmental pollutants in several in vitro studies. However cysteine is beneficial if it is produced INSIDE the cell, but is mildly toxic if it is produced outside the cell. When Cystine is heated, molecular bonds are cleaved and it becomes Cysteine.
NAC does not travel well in the blood stream, and doesn't reach the cells (to be used to synthesize glutathione and Glutamic acid). NAC supplementation over long periods has been associated with modest increases in serum glutathione, but has not proven particularly useful in the treatment of chronic, long-term intracellular glutathione deficiencies.
Furthermore, therapeutic levels of NAC are relatively toxic and have been associated with significant side effects. At therapeutic doses, oral NAC supplementation has been associated with cerebral symptoms, nausea, blurred vision, and vomiting. Immunocal® provides the precursors for the manufacture of intra-cellular cystine, and effectively delivers these to the cells. For this reason, Immunocal® supplementation has been associated with sustained and significant increases of cellular glutathione, and is virtually devoid of troublesome side-effects. Immunocal® has the same side-effect profile as mothers' milk.
No. The power of our patents is not in manufacturing. Immunocal® patents (there are many patents on Immunocal®, national and international patents) relate to the METHOD OF USE. That is, no other whey protein can state: "clinically PROVEN to stimulate the
immune system", and "significantly raises glutathione levels". Additionally, although there are dozens of companies producing denatured (high-heat Pasteurized) whey proteins (primarily for use as a protein source in body-building), there currently is at least one company manufacturing an UNDENATURED whey protein product similar to Immunocal®, (Fresenius Kabi, Germany). Over many clinical studies and medical reviews on undenatured whey protein appear in the clinical literature which specifically involved Immunocal®, and not other whey proteins. Accept no imitations.