Fucoidans have been shown to exhibit excellent immuno-modulating activity, both down-regulating allergic responses and enhancing anti-pathogenic responses. Fucoidan is effective in inhibiting prion disease when delivered orally to mice and Marinova has demonstrated that there is a low but significant uptake of high molecular weight Maritech® Undaria pinnatifida Extract in serum. Although an increase could also be seen in patients ingesting whole Undaria pinnatifida seaweed, the effect was only significant when Marinova’s high-purity fucoidan was taken. In human clinical trials, Maritech® Extract increased phagocytic activity in granulocytes and macrophages, the cells responsible for ingesting invading organisms. The results show that Maritech® Extract has an effect on both short term and long term immune responses. In a separate clinical study, Maritech® Extract increased the total number of circulating haemopoietic stem cells that also had enhanced levels of a sticky receptor. These stem cells have the capacity to differentiate into all the different types of immune cells as required by the body. This property has particular potential in the area of stem cell mobilization, an area of focus for Marinova.
For an example of fucoidan activity in this area, refer to the following journal articles:
Maruyama H, Tamauchi H, Hashimoto M, et al. Suppression of Th2 immune responses by Mekabu fucoidan from Undaria pinnatifida sporophylls. Int Arch Allergy Immunol. 2005;137(4):289-294.
Yang M, Ma C, Sun J, et al. Fucoidan stimulation induces a functional maturation of human monocyte-derived dendritic cells. Int Immunopharmacol. 2008;8(13-14):1754-1760.
Doh-Ura K, Kuge T, Uomoto M, et al. Prophylactic effect of dietary seaweed Fucoidan against enteral prion infection. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2007;51(6):2274-2777.