Dhanvantari Ayurveda Center  Michael Dick, Ayurvedic Practitioner, Leesburg, Florida    e-mail:



The Ayurvedist®

Volume VI Issue 2                                                                                                                 March 2009  

Health and Science in the News



                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The Angel of the Waters, found in Central Park, NYC is symbolic of the healing effects of water. This is true in the West as in the East, now and into the ancient past.

In This Issue  Health in the News and More....


Folk Medicine


General News


The Learned Intermediary Doctrine


Scientific Studies


Book Corner -- Computing Science in Ancient India


Folk Medicine:


Here is another salve that is tumor inhibiting. It is made by “la Puebla Elementals” (omega salve).  The formulation seems to be less aggressive than thoses formulas containing blood root and/or poke root… a good sound formula, and with less problems.  I talked for a time with the person who has formulated this product (and other products of interest).  He appears to be a sound and energeic herbalist…worth checking out.  He grows many of his herbs.   La puebla Elementals, p.o. Box267 Rowe,NM 87562


Health Tips Good for Most Anybody -- Edgar Cayce Readings (Venture Inward Jan 2009; researched by JOHN WAITEKUS, MD)

General News:


NAMA is taking nominations for board member elections


Practicing Medicine: The Learned Intermediary Doctrine


There is a principle of law (torte law) that says that a party selling, prescribing, etc. a product is under obligation by law to make known to the purchaser indications and contraindications of use, as well as warnings or side effects associated with the use of the product. It "emerged from the development of strict product liability law, including the recognition of a cause of action for failure to warn"--David J. Cooner, "The Intersection of Madison Avenue and the Learned Intermediary Doctrine." The courts held that the learned doctors are in the best position to determine suitability and so on of a drug for a specific patient and that patient's needs and vulnerabilities. In the health care profession, doctors, dentists, and the like are required to tell patients the good news and the bad news about the medicine or treatment recommended. Should a practitioner fail to communicate these data to the patient the patient has legal recourse in the courts. The manufacturer may have liability, too. Also, he or she must be informed about interactions, which may be included in product literature distributed by the manufacturer. This point is one of law which has implications for ethics also (generics versus brand names, e.g.). Two herbs from the Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia come to mind in this context of torte law--bala and vaca. Some practitioners in the US are still using these in their practice. We know that the FDA has limited their use even though they have not shown indications of bad effects when used properly. The conscientious practitioner must disclose FDA warnings associated with these when suggesting them to clients. Another herb--katuka--is problematic because it causes herb-drug interactions that can be fatal. Our intent is to remind students and practitioners alike that there is responsibility with rights.



Scientific Studies:


Antimicrobial potential of Glycyrrhiza glabra roots

Journal of Ethnopharmacology 116 (2008) 377–380
Vivek K. Gupta a, Atiya Fatima a, Uzma Faridi a, Arvind S. Negi b, Karuna Shanker b, J.K. Kumarb, Neha Rahuja a, Suaib Luqmana, Brijesh S. Sisodia a,
Dharmendra Saikia a, M.P. Darokar a,∗, Suman P.S. Khanuja a a Genetic Resources and Biotechnology Division, Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CSIR), Kukrail Picnic Spot Road, P.O. CIMAP, Lucknow 226015, India b Analytical Chemistry Division, Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CSIR), Kukrail Picnic Spot Road, P.O. CIMAP, Lucknow 226015, India

The present study was aimed to investigate antimicrobial potential of Glycyrrhiza glabra roots. Antimycobacterial activity of Glycyrrhiza glabra was found at 500 g/mL concentration. Bioactivity guided phytochemical analysis identified glabridin as potentially active against both Mycobacterium tuberculosis H37Ra and H37Rv strains at 29.16 g/mL concentration. It exhibited antimicrobial activity against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Our results indicate potential use of licorice as antitubercular agent through systemic experiments and sophisticated anti-TB assay.


Role of copper in human neurological disorders1–3
Vishal Desai and Stephen G Kaler

Am J Clin Nutr 2008; 88(suppl):855S– 8S.


Copper is a trace element present in all tissues and is required for cellular respiration, peptide amidation, neurotransmitter biosynthesis, pigment formation, and connective tissue strength. Copper is a cofactor for numerous enzymes and plays an important role in central nervous system development; low concentrations of copper may result in incomplete development, whereas excess copper maybe injurious. Copper may be involved in free radical production, via the Haber-Weiss reaction, that results in mitochondrial damage, DNA breakage, and neuronal injury. Evidence of abnormal copper transport and aberrant copper-protein interactions in numerous human neurological disorders supports the critical importance of this trace metal for proper neurodevelopment and neurological function. The biochemical phenotypes of human disorders that involve copper homeostasis suggest possible biomarkers of copper status that may be applicable to general populations.

Allergenicity of Soybean: New Developments in Identification of Allergenic Proteins, Cross-Reactivities and Hypoallergenization Technologies
Food Research and Development Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, St-Hyacinthe, Quebec, Canada


Soybean is considered one of the “big eight” foods that are believed to be responsible for 90% of all allergenic reactions. Soy allergy is of particular importance, because soybeans are widely used in processed foods and, therefore, represent a particularly insidious source of hidden allergens. Although significant advances have been made in the identification and characterization of soybean allergens, scientists are not completely certain about which proteins in soy cause allergic reactions. At least 16 allergens have been identified. Most of them, as with other plant food allergens, have a metabolic, storage, or protective function. These allergens belong to protein families which have conserved structural features in relation with their biological activity, which explains the wide immunochemical cross- ecognition observed among members of the legume family. Detailed analysis of the structure-allergenicity relationships has been hampered by the complexity and heterogeneity of soybean proteins. A variety of technological approaches have been attempted to decrease soybean allergenicity. This paper provides a comprehensive review of the current body of knowledge on the identification and characterization of soybean allergens, as well as an update on current hypoallergenization techniques.



Book Corner: Computing Science in Ancient India by Rao, TRN and Kak, Subhash, 1998


I am on the lookout for new titles in English that reveal more of the depth and scope of the Vedic culture of ancient India. The title above came to my attention a few years back and I finally got around to reading it, recently. Some binder quotes are worth citing: " Not only the sign for zero, but also the binary number system, the ideas of metarules, algebraic transformation, recursion, hashing, mathematical logic, formal grammars, and high level language description arose first in India. This book of contributions by the leading scholars in the world in the history of Indian science presents an overview of these seminal contributions to computer science and computation in astronomy and cognitive science." Subhash Kak


"Unlike the case of the great linguistic discoveries of the Indians which directly influenced and inspired Western linguistics, this discovery of the theory of binary numbers (by Pingala) has so far gone unrecorded in the annals of the West." B. van Nooten

With respect to art there are some interesting findings. Kak writes: "Subsequent phases have been determined using evolution of style and other radiocarbon dates. The mesolithic period has been dated as 12,000 to 6000 BP. A distribution of the sites of the rock art is given in Figure 2.

The earliest drawings...are characterized by dynamic action, vitality in form, and an acute insight into abstraction and visual perception. It has been found that there is significant continuity of motif in the rock art and the later Indus-Sarasvati civilization indicating an unbroken link with the paleolithic and the mesolithic cultures of India.  Figure 3 shows tessellations from the ancient rock art of India. G.S. Tyagi (1992) has argued that these designs occur at the lowest stratum of the rock paintings and if that is accepted they belong to the upper paleolithic period. These designs are unique to India in the ancient world. Tyagi has suggested that they may represent a 'trance experience.'"

These examples portray a keen insight into neurophysiology, which weighs against the prevailing thought that stone age man was intellectually primitive.


In candor this material is a minor segment of the book's offerings--origins of computing science, but it does point to a level of intellectual sophistication. Its contributors have analyzed Vedic literature for evidence of ways its experts applied computational science (mathematics). As the cover quotes above indicate language was an important one but astronomy was important, too. David Frawley has contributed a nice selection of astronomy and astrology of early India, reasoning through the Rigveda and other sources for evidence that the ancients were good observers and often attempted to quantify their observations with measurements--distances, speed of light and so on. Astronomical references are easily dated to 1800 BCE. The second chapter of the book gives a nice overview of Vedic science. The theory of consciousness and its paradoxical view of reality as dual are notable. The development of the philosophical systems which incorporate this thinking remains a very ambiguous area, indeed. In summary, this book, while interesting is often turgid / technical in style and requires a technical background in the subject area of interest.





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