A MESSAGE FROM TBRI'S PRESIDENT AND CO-FOUNDER
Since its founding in 1981, TBRI has focused on unraveling the mysteries of cancer and chronic infectious diseases, and on developing safe and effective treatments for them. Early on in our research we realized that if we could somehow augment and assist the body’s immune system response, we could boost its natural ability to protect and defend itself from these life-threatening illnesses.
To that end our scientists’ creative and open-minded approach included the investigation of the reported therapeutic effects of herbal and plant extracts, which had been used for centuries as folk remedies. Just as aspirin originally came from the bark of the willow tree, many of the advanced drugs commonly in use today originally came from plant extracts.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) studies these and other folk therapies at the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM). Its director in the summer of 2000, Stephen Straus, M.D. wrote: “Researchers in conventional medicine begin by focusing on mice and molecules. They evaluate hypotheses…and test new devices and medications long before the general public knows about them. The NCCAM, on the other hand, begins with so-called complementary and alternative medicine therapies that are already in use. We are examining some about which there already is a significant amount of quality information”. (NCCAM Clearinghouse, summer 2000, Vol. VII, No.3, p.2)
At the beginning of the AIDS epidemic in the early 1980’s, TBRI tested an Eastern folk remedy extracted from pinecones for its ability to block HIV infection of human cells in the test tube (in vitro). It worked! Not only did it block HIV, but also influenza and herpes virus infections (in vitro) as well. Subsequently, TBRI scientists perfected a method for extracting the biologically active components of the pinecone, resulting in a patent being granted for that process. Our scientists have since published more than 20 peer-reviewed research papers on the remarkable results (in vitro) and in mice (in vivo).
The extract, scientifically termed a polyphenylpropenoid-polysaccharide complex (PPC), appears to be very promising as an orally administered “adjuvant”, a substance that augments the body’s immune response thus increasing protection against disease. In a sense, an adjuvant’s effect may be considered analogous to a catalyst’s effect in chemical reactions. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has yet to approve an orally administered adjuvant. TBRI is at the forefront in developing a safe and effective one, with its patented PPC demonstrating usefulness in stimulating human immune cell responses.
Traditional injection-administered adjuvants are known to cause side effects. The need exists for a safe and effective oral adjuvant, especially with a potential influenza pandemic looming, and shortages of vaccines and/or antiviral antibiotics to combat it. Typically adjuvants are used to complement medical treatments such as chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, antibiotics and vaccination. The distinct advantage of PPC seems to lie in its ability to “help” the body when its immune system is weakened or challenged by: infection, disease, side effects of severe therapies, or the aging process.
In the years ahead the median age of Americans is expected to rise, accompanied by an increase in chronic diseases such as cancer. More will survive their initial diagnosis and live longer lives. There will be great demand for personalized medicine such as “tailored” therapies and “designer” drugs, many based on ever-improving genetic analyses. Such sophisticated diagnoses and treatments, combined with immunological, psychological and sociological support, will significantly enhance favorable patient prognoses.
Whatever the therapy of choice, PPC is poised to help. How it best helps will depend on our scientists’ ability to maximize its therapeutic potential. TBRI’s vision for the future has led us to formulate an aggressive strategy to bring PPC’s potential to reality.
Akiko Tanaka, Ph.D.
TBRI is grateful for the annual support of people just like you whose gifts assure the margin of excellence in our vital research work.
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Copyright 2013, All Right Reserved | TBRI: Tampa Bay Research Institute | 501(c)(3) not-for-profit, independent biomedical research institute
FIRST IN FLORIDA
TBRI was established in 1981 as the first 501 (c)(3) not-for-profit biomedical research organization of its kind in Florida.
Our scientists pioneered the discovery of the relationship between virus infections and cancer with TBRI being awarded a multitude of patents for its discoveries related to the immune system.
To unleash the power of the immune system to treat, cure and prevent cancer and debilitating diseases. Inherent in our responsibilities is the training of the next generation of scientists and educating the public about matters of immune health and science
Our ultimate goal is to improve the health and longevity of those suffering from cancer and other life-altering diseases. To achieve this, we will focus our research on finding ways to engage the immune system to effectively prevent, ameliorate and cure such diseases. Inherent in our institutional responsibilities is training of the next generation of scientists and educating the public about matters of immune health and science.
Since its founding in 1981, the Institute has focused on unraveling the mysteries of cancer and chronic diseases, and on developing safe and effective treatments for them. Early on in our research we realized that if we could somehow augment and assist the body’s immune response, we could boost its natural ability to protect and defend us from these life-threatening illnesses.
To that end, our scientists’ creative and open-minded approach has focused on discovering ways in which we can engage the immune system to effectively prevent, treat, and cure many of today’s life altering diseases. In doing so we have realized that by engaging in what most would consider non-traditional or non-mainstream research we have been able to make significant discoveries that have resulted in the granting of numerous national and international patents and the licensing of some of these patents for commercial development.
By traveling this alternate path we have been able to develop a template for success, especially as it pertains to investigating the medicinal properties of the herbals and plant products often described in the lore of ancient and modern folk medicine, and we have been able to develop products that continue to make a significant difference in the lives of others.
11208 Blue Heron Blvd. North
St. Petersburg, FL 33716
Akiko Tanaka, Ph.D., President and Co-Founder
• We are dedicated to increasing the longevity and quality of life.
• We are open and flexible in our approach to research.
• We are engaged in collaborations and partnerships that are
essential elements of the Institute’s DNA.
• We are committed to providing community science, health, and
wellness education and programs