Mumijo is a widely used traditional medicine, especially in Russia, Altai Mountains, Mongolia, Iran Kasachstan and in Kirgistan. Mumijo preparations have been successfully used for the prevention and treatment of infectious diseases; they display immune-stimulating and antiallergic activity as well. In the present study, we investigate the chemical composition and the biomedical potential of a Mumijo(-related) product collected from the Antarctica. The yellow material originates from the snow petrels, Pagodroma nivea. Extensive purification and chemical analysis revealed that the fossil samples are a mixture of glycerol derivatives. In vitro experiments showed that the Mumijo extract caused in cortical neurons a strong neuroprotective effect against the apoptosis-inducing amyloid peptide fragment beta-fragment 25-35 (Abeta25-35). In addition, the fraction rich in glycerol ethers/wax esters displayed a significant growth-promoting activity in permanent neuronal PC12 cells. It is concluded that this new Mumijo preparation has distinct and marked neuroprotective activity, very likely due to the content of glycerol ether derivatives.
T.R. Abdurahmanov and co-author (1970) applied "Mumio" in the treatment of thrombo-phlebitis in deep veins of the lower extremities. The preparation was prescribed in doses of 0.3 grams once a day, over a period of ten days. Patients received no other medical treatment. Clinical results and biochemical and haematological examinations showed that already by the third to the sixth day of treatment patients experienced a reduction of pain and of the extent of swelling in the affected extremities. By the eighth to the tenth day, skin temperature had normalised and other symptoms of the illness had disappeared.
Using treatment with "Mumio" at 1-1.5%, there was a increase in the content of haemoglobin and in the amount of arthrocytes in the blood, and other leukocyte levels normalised. On examination of the blood coagulation system of the patients it was found that by the third to the tenth day of treatment, coagulation time of the blood was lengthened by 92-132% in comparison with the initial data. Tolerance of the plasma to heparin decreased by 42-86%. The rate of fibrinolysis increased by 39-118%, but the concentration of degradation products decreased by 250-300%. The concentration of heparin increased by 37-80%. During the treatment there appeared to be no negative effects on the function of the kidneys or liver.
[comment: Considering the significant anti-coagulatory activity of the preparation, "Mumio" may be recommended for the treatment of illnesses with thrombo-phlebitis in the deep veins of the lower extremities.]
V.N. Ismailova and co-author (1969) used "Mumio" for the treatment of fractures of tubular bones in fifty-two children aged from two to sixteen. For one to five year olds, the preparation was prescribed internally two to three times a day at a dose of 0.1-0.2 grams; from five to ten years of age at 0.2-.4 grams; from ten to fifteen at 0.4-0.5 grams. The authors noted a very positive influence of the preparation. Side effects were observed in only two children in the form of nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea; in these cases, because of these side effects, the prescription of "Mumio" was discontinued for a time.
[comment: In our view, the high doses of "Mumio" used in this study may have an undesirably exaggerated impact, in comparison with that produced by the normally recommended therapeutic doses. Such high doses should not be used over a long course of treatment.]
There was a total of 57 patients in the group. Sub-groups were affected with lesions of the hip (37), of parts of the knees (8) , and of vertabrae (12). The author used standard dry extract of "Mumio" at 0.1 grams twice a day over the course of twenty days. Repetition of the course of treatment occurred after a break of ten days. The total dose over the course of treatment came to four grams of the preparation.
During the treatment with "Mumio" patients regained ability to sleep, appetite, and began to quickly improve clinically after only two weeks; after two to three weeks clinical and haemodynamic signs (numbers of erythrocites, leukocytes, thrombocytes), and several biochemical signs, and liver functional tests, had completely normalised. In the patients being treated with "Mumio", reduction of the time during which a plaster cast was needed was apparent at one month.
Overall, prescription of "Mumio" during the post-operative period increased the speed of reparation processes in the body of the vertebrae by 28-30 days in children and by 15-25 days in adults, in comparison with those cases that were treated using well-known methods but without "Mumio".
The author reports that by taking "Mumio", patients significantly improved their general condition, normalised sleep, regained appetite, lowered pain in the area of the fracture, quickly decreased swelling, dispersed hematomas, and sooner regained the weight-bearing capacity of their extremities, and reduced their time of immobility.
[comment: Despite the encouraging reported results, one cannot agree with the author's prescription regimen: two ten-day courses with a ten day break. The ten-day break after the influence of the preparation is only just beginning to manifest itself is in our view too long, and could militate against the optimum healing of the lesion.
Since the preparation is non-toxic, a more expedient method is to prescribe not once at 0.2 grams, but preferably twice daily, using the calculation of 1-3 milligrams per kilogram of body weight (i.e. 0.1-0.3 grams for a 100kg person; depending on the extent of mineralisation of the preparation) over the course of twenty to thirty days. Breaks should be no longer than five days; repetition of the course of treatment is needed only in long, slow-healing fractures or in fractures of the large bones.]
L.H. Habibov (1970) used a "thick" extract of "Mumio" in a complex of treatments for patients with intestinal conditions (60%) and with periodontal disease. Treatment effects were comparable to the results of generally accepted methods, including local use of antibiotics and parenteral dosage with extract of aloe and vitamin B1. "Mumio" was prescribed internally at 0.2 grams once a day over the course of ten days. For one-time conditions, application of "Mumio" in the form of five per cent water extract was prescribed.
Clinical X-ray and microbiological analysis showed that in periodontal conditions, treatment with "Mumio" has an efficacious remedying effect; it promotes rapid regression of standard symptoms of the illness, with elimination of local inflammatory reaction, improved general condition and the feeling of well-being of the patients. It encourages regression of various general pathological processes in alveolar extensions of the jaw, and improves the trophic ability of the gums and of the mucous layer of the mouth cavity. Microbiological examinations on the mouth cavity and of the tooth-gum pockets showed that with the treatment with "Mumio" there was a greater amount of bacteria that possess an aggressive fermentation complex, and a decrease in incidence of pain by three times, in comparison with patients who received antibiotics (tetracycline, penicillin, levomycin) or aloe and vitamin B1. In this application form, the range of treatment possible using "Mumio" is very broad.
A.S. Vishnyevski and co-author (1972), in a health-resort clinic in Essentuka, used the Caucasian variety of "Mumio" as a component in a combination treatment for patients with ulcers of the stomach and small intestine, and in other cases of non-specific ulcerative colitis. "Mumio" was prescribed over 28 days on an empty stomach, in a dose of 0.2 to 0.5 grams in aqueous solution. In cases of ulcerative colitis "Mumio" was introduced as a microclasm. Favourable results in improving the general condition of the body, and improvement in the functional condition of the stomach, small intestine and lower parts of the large intestine were noted. "Mumio" decreased the ulcerated area in the stomach mucous membranes, increased its trophic ability, promoted healing of ulcers and increased the effectiveness of the resort therapy.
[comment: The animal experiments support the findings of clinical studies recommending therapeutic use of the preparation in cases of stomach and intestinal ulcers.]
We here report at somewhat greater length on clinical research on treatment of patients with stomach and intestinal ulcers, carried out in two clinics: the Department of Internal Diseases of the Medical Institute of Kyrgystan, and the Leningrad sanitation-hygiene and teaching faculty of the Medical Institute of Tadjikistan.
A total of seventy-four patients with stomach and intestinal ulcers was studied. The largest group of patients (44%) had suffered from the disease for 2-5 years and a further large group (21%) for ten years. The great majority of the patients (72) either recovered from their illnesses or reduced the severity of the condition by localising the ulcer, over varying intervals of time. Thirty-seven of the patients suffered from indigestion, twenty-six had a tendency toward nausea and vomiting, twenty-four suffered from belching, ninety had swelling of the stomach, and twenty-eight had a tendency toward constipation. The Gregorson reflex was positive in twenty-six of the patients. Upon X-ray examination, sixty-five patients displayed a "niche" in the bulb of the intestine and in three of these the "niches" had begun entering the wall of the stomach. In all patients signs of changes in the folds and relief of the mucous membranes, disturbance in motor functions and various degrees of deformation of the bulb of the intestine were detected upon X-ray examination.
Treatment using "Mumio" was done with no change in the conditions on the background treatment or nutrition. The preparation was prescribed internally at 100 milligrams twice a day (morning and evening) over the course of twenty-four to twenty-six days, thirty minutes before eating. Before use, the preparation was dissolved in a small amount of tea or boiled water.
During the 15-20 minutes after taking "Mumio", a reduction of the feeling of pain occurred in almost all patients. All dyspepsia occurrences (nausea, vomiting, heartburn, belching, etc.) disappeared at seven to day days of treatment. In patients with constipation, the stool was regular at the sixth to fifteenth day of treatment.
During the process of treatment with "Mumio" the "niches"
disappeared in sixty five patients (95%), and in a further three patients
they showed a dramatic decrease in size. The Gregerson reaction became
negative in all twenty-six patients in whom it had been positive during
the treatment. Analysis of the gastric fluids showed normal activity
of the secretion functions of the stomach: in hyperacidity and hypoacidity
the process of acidification of the gastric fluids gradually normalised,
in a few cases increasing the level of pepsinogins. Gastrobiopsy examination
in thirty-two patients showed various degrees of dystrophy amelioration
to superficial, with expression of subepithelial swellings.
In three cases, in which the patients were very badly afflicted with pain, prescription of "Mumio" was combined with Vicaline. With this combination, pain decreased over the course of three days and the patient recovered much faster than with the use of either preparation separately.
In four patients, besides ulcerative diseases, chronic spastic colitis was also established. After performing a course of treatment with "Mumio" the ulcer pain symptoms and other symptoms connected to the accompanying inflammation of the affected stomach parts and intestines disappeared.
In summary, using the treatment with "Mumio" a healing affect was achieved in all seventy-four patients. With this treatment no side effects were found.
With the purpose of finding out mechanisms of mumijo functioning it is useful to study (Brekhman - the Russian pharmacologist, by whom Adaptogen" is the term coined in 1957. 1957: Grech, 1963) its influence on some biochemical blood indicators of rabbits and rats, that are chronically poisoned by benzol.