The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog ran from 2006 to 2016 and was intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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  • Recent Comments

    Boswellia treatment of osteoarthritis

    5-Loxin is a product made from Boswellia serrata (aka Salai guggal in Ayurvedic medicine).

    It has anti-inflammatory action, and was used in this study to treat osteoarthritis of the knee.

    First, the details.

    • 75 patients were treated with 100 mg or 250 mg of 5-Loxin daily or placebo.
    • Treatment lasted 90 days.
    • Patients were evaluated for pain and physical function.
    • Additionally, metalloproteinase-3 (a marker for joint inflammation and destruction) was evaluated in synovial (joint) fluid.

    And, the results.

    • Both doses of 5-Loxin were associated with clinically and statistically significant improvements in pain and physical function scores.
    • Improvements with 5-Loxin 250 mg were observed 7 days after starting treatment.
    • There was also a significant reduction in synovial fluid matrix metalloproteinase-3.
    • 5-Loxin was well tolerated.

    The bottom line?
    It’s reported that 5-Loxin is not a COX-2 inhibitor — a form of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that targets COX-2, an enzyme responsible for inflammation and pain. Rather, it’s described as a selective, non-redox inhibitor of the enzyme 5-lipoxygenase.

    The authors concluded, “5-Loxin reduces pain and improves physical functioning significantly in osteoarthritis patients; and it is safe for human consumption.”

    Yes, the results are encouraging, but any conclusion regarding it’s safety will require more than a 90-day study of 75 patients. I was unable to find published long-term safety data on 5-Loxin, just a rat study.

    More background on Boswellia can be found here.

    8/1/08 15:09 JR

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