Discovery of the health benefits of Immunocal

At the beginning of the 70’s, under the direction of Gustavo Bounous, MD, (FRCSC), a team of researchers from the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University (Canada), was studying proteins of animal and vegetable origins in order to feed the patients with an elemental diet that would allow them to reduce their stay in hospital. Since 1978, their studies had been focusing on whey proteins. This work led to the surprising discovery that a specific undenatured whey protein concentrate helped to sustain optimal glutathione levels. Subsequent identification of the active ingredients present in this protein mixture led in 1993 to the production of a high-quality bioactive protein that was given the name Immunocal.

This research was supported by the Medical Research Council of Canada and the National Institutes of Health in the United States. The observed effects of Immunocal which have been discovered at McGill University have been evaluated by numerous independent research centers worldwide, notable in Germany, Japan, Australia, France, United States and in Nova Scotia (Canada).

Placebo-controlled clinical studies to prove the health benefits of Immunocal

The gold standard for clinical evidence for efficacy is a placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial. Immunotec’s present research activities therefore focus on controlled clinical trials in cooperation with various clinical partners in Montreal and other clinical centers in Canada and the U.S.A. The recently published study on the effects of a research formulation of Immunocal on lung cancer patients (Tozer et al. Antioxidants & Redox Signaling, 10:2, 395-402, 2008) is an example. This trial has shown quite impressive results with regard to the health benefits of this Immunocal formulation in the nutrition of seriously ill advanced lung cancer patients. Other clinical studies showing the efficacy of Immunocal have been performed and published by several clinical centers.

Living Healthier Through Natural Technologies

The last few decades have witnessed a major shift from the reliance on drugs to a demand for natural alternatives. What has spurred this change is an increasingly overburdened, expensive and often inaccessible medical system that has been so busy taking care of the sick, that wellness has been left to non-conventional medicine. More and more of us…

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Immunocal – Where’s the Beef?

No beef actually, but you got the right animal – Immunocal comes from cows! In fact, it takes about 125 gallons of fresh raw milk to make a pound of Immunocal. What eventually ends up passing your lips is a derivative of whey protein isolate especially engineered for…

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Glutathione – Why all the Noise?

Glutathione (GSH) is a word that many people are still not familiar with, but given that there are over 100,000 medical and scientific journal articles written on this subject to date, it is one of those terms that will eventually work its way into our common everyday language. One of the reasons for GSH’s increasing popularity, is that it exists in every cell of your body and is essential for life and critical for health.

One common myth about glutathione is that you can eat glutathione and consequently raise your body’s GSH levels. Untrue. Eating glutathione supplements or foods rich in glutathione will not do the trick. Most of it will end up being broken down in your digestive tract and eliminated. Since glutathione is made within your cells, what needs to be accomplished is delivering the building blocks (“precursors”) of GSH to the cells themselves. The hardest glutathione precursor to find in our diet is the amino acid “cysteine” which must be in a form that survives the trip from your mouth to your living cells. This is not as easy as it sounds.

In nature, this usable form of cysteine can be found in eggs, but the eggs must be raw, otherwise the proteins that carry the cysteine are changed by heat and lose their efficiency as a “cysteine delivery vehicle”. Another good source would be meat, but again, the meat would need to be raw to be a competent source of cysteine. Aside from a well-prepared steak tartar, safe sources of raw meat are not abundant. What about vegetables? You guessed it. Raw cruciferous veggies are a decent source, but you would have to eat a whole bunch of broccoli with all the gaseous consequences your spouse will suffer.

Whey, a protein fraction of milk, is a source of glutathione precursors. The glutathione building blocks in whey are very fragile, but techniques to extract these valuable proteins have been developed. Researchers at McGill University had started investigating these GSH precursors as early as the 1980’s. The original research team headed by Dr. Gustavo Bounous eventually formed a private enterprise to further develop and market these glutathione building blocks. They adopted the trade name “Immunocal” for the eventual formulation and Immunotec continues to enhance this product. Immunocal is a natural source of the glutathione precursor cysteine for the maintenance of a strong immune system.

Immunocal – Whey Above the Rest

So often we are asked how Immunocal fits into the world of dairy science and whey proteins. Let’s examine this rapidly expanding field and see how these products are truly unique.

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Living Longer, Living Stronger

As time goes by, it has become increasingly clearer that glutathione and cysteine levels not only fall as we age, but the levels of these two critical substances are directly related to how well and older person is doing. Studies have not only looked at physical health, but quality of life, mental functioning and sense of well-being.

Dr. Wulf Dröge has been for many years an advocate of taking advantage of this strategy. His research goes back over several decades and has set the foundations for many other researchers to build upon. One such study was published in January 2008. (Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2008 Jan;11(1):40-4). Australians A. Hayes and PJ Cribb have suggested that we approach the aspect of strength and muscle mass in aging the same way as we approach an RSP (retirement savings plan). The more we pay attention to investing in our bodies at an earlier age, the higher the payoff when we are older.

Nice to be constantly reassured that we are doing the right thing!

Glutathione supplementation – manipulation of natural defense mechanisms in health and disease

The human body is one of nature’s finest miracles and researchers are still unlocking many of its secrets. Recent discoveries have shed important light on the role that glutathione plays in maintaining health…

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The Science of Glutathione

Glutathione is a small molecule found in almost every cell. It cannot enter most cells directly and therefore must be made inside the cell, from its three constituent amino acids: glycine, glutamate and cysteine. The rate at which glutathione can be made…

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Glutathione – A Natural Product to Discover

A recent press release by CBS highlighted the need for a “universal or all-purpose drug”…

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How does Immunocal Platinum differ from Immunocal?

Immunocal has been Immunotec’s flagship product for years. Immunocal is a natural source of the glutathione precursor cysteine for the maintenance of a strong immune …

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