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Garlic ingredient wipes out hospital superbugs in tests

Most people do not realize that the majority of modern medicines are still extracted from plants, given fancy names and marketing campaigns, and sold in bottles for far more than the cost of raising (or finding) the plants yourself. Digitalis comes from Foxglove. Valium comes from the Valaria plant, and so forth. Garlic has been known as a "blood purifier" for hundreds of years,ridding the body of certain parasites and curing many of what are now known to be infectious blood-borne illnesses. (As a side note, this medicinal use of garlic is the origin of the myth of its effectiveness against vampires). So, the fact that garlic may help fight off bacteria resistant to synthetic antibiotics is not as strange as it may sound.

                  Garlic ingredient wipes out
                  hospital superbugs in tests

                  By John von Radowitz

                  29 December 2003
                  BAn ingredient in garlic may offer one of the best
                  defences against hospital superbugs, research
                  shows. The compound is said to be effective
                  even against highly resistant strains of the
                  notorious MRSA bug, which has claimed many
                  Tests by Dr Ron Cutler, a microbiologist, showed
                  it can cure patients with MRSA-infected wounds
                  "within days", he said. Allicin, which occurs
                  naturally in garlic, not only killed known varieties
                  of MRSA, but also new superbug generations
                  resistant to "last-resort" antibiotics such as
                  vancomycin. The findings will be published in the
                  Journal of Biomedical Science in the new year.
                  Dr Cutler, from the University of East London, said: "Antibiotics are increasingly
                  ineffective [against MRSA]. Plant compounds have evolved over millions of years as
                  chemical defence agents against infection. Garlic has been used in medicine for
                  MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) causes 2,000 deaths in UK
                  hospitals each year, mainly by infecting surgical wounds. Dr Cutler is starting clinical


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