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Kava lactones and the kava-kava controversy.

Abstract

Kava-kava is a traditional beverage of the South Pacific islanders and has had centuries of use without major side effects. Standardised extracts of kava-kava produced in Europe have led to many serious health problems and even to death. The extraction process (aqueous vs. acetone in the two types of preparations) is responsible for the difference in toxicity as extraction of glutathione in addition to the kava lactones is important to provide protection against hepatotoxicity. The Michael reaction between glutathione and kava lactones, resulting in opening of the lactone ring, reduces the side effects of the kava kava extracts. This protective activity was demonstrated using Acanthamoebae castellanii in which 100% cell death occurred with 100 mg ml(-1) kava lactones alone, and 40% cell death with a mixture of 100 mg ml (-1)glutathione and 100 mg ml (-1) kava lactones. A comparison of kava lactone toxicity with other pharmaceutical products is discussed and recommendations made for safe usage of kava-kava products

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  • Authors+Show Affiliations

    ,

    Phyto-Research Ltd, Epinal Way, Loughborough, Leicester LE11 3EH, UK.

    , , ,

    Source

    Phytochemistry 64:3 2003 Oct pg 673-9

    MeSH

    Acanthamoeba
    Animals
    Cell Survival
    Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury
    Drug Interactions
    Glutathione
    Humans
    Kava
    Lactones
    Plant Extracts
    Plant Roots
    Plant Stems
    Pyrones
    Tissue Distribution

    Pub Type(s)

    Comparative Study
    Journal Article

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    13679089

    Citation

    Whitton, Peter A., et al. "Kava Lactones and the Kava-kava Controversy." Phytochemistry, vol. 64, no. 3, 2003, pp. 673-9.
    Whitton PA, Lau A, Salisbury A, et al. Kava lactones and the kava-kava controversy. Phytochemistry. 2003;64(3):673-9.
    Whitton, P. A., Lau, A., Salisbury, A., Whitehouse, J., & Evans, C. S. (2003). Kava lactones and the kava-kava controversy. Phytochemistry, 64(3), pp. 673-9.
    Whitton PA, et al. Kava Lactones and the Kava-kava Controversy. Phytochemistry. 2003;64(3):673-9. PubMed PMID: 13679089.
    * Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
    TY - JOUR T1 - Kava lactones and the kava-kava controversy. AU - Whitton,Peter A, AU - Lau,Andrew, AU - Salisbury,Alicia, AU - Whitehouse,Julie, AU - Evans,Christine S, PY - 2003/9/19/pubmed PY - 2003/12/3/medline PY - 2003/9/19/entrez SP - 673 EP - 9 JF - Phytochemistry JO - Phytochemistry VL - 64 IS - 3 N2 - Kava-kava is a traditional beverage of the South Pacific islanders and has had centuries of use without major side effects. Standardised extracts of kava-kava produced in Europe have led to many serious health problems and even to death. The extraction process (aqueous vs. acetone in the two types of preparations) is responsible for the difference in toxicity as extraction of glutathione in addition to the kava lactones is important to provide protection against hepatotoxicity. The Michael reaction between glutathione and kava lactones, resulting in opening of the lactone ring, reduces the side effects of the kava kava extracts. This protective activity was demonstrated using Acanthamoebae castellanii in which 100% cell death occurred with 100 mg ml(-1) kava lactones alone, and 40% cell death with a mixture of 100 mg ml (-1)glutathione and 100 mg ml (-1) kava lactones. A comparison of kava lactone toxicity with other pharmaceutical products is discussed and recommendations made for safe usage of kava-kava products SN - 0031-9422 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/13679089/full_citation L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0031942203003819 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -