Benfotiamine Product Summary 6 of 7 – Benfotiamine in Other Vulnerable Tissues
More recently, new studies have begun to document Benfotiamine’s ability to shield other tissues from AGE damage. One just-published study tested the ability of thiamin and Benfotiamine to protect diabetic rodents’ retinas from the ravages of AGE.
The researchers then gave one group of diabetic rodents Benfotiamine supplements, and left another group unsupplemented, keeping a third group of nondiabetic animals as a control group. Nine months later, they examined the animals’ eyes, testing the level of AGE in their retinas, examining metabolic abnormalities of the cells, and looking for acellular capillaries (the dead husks left behind when the cells of the tiny blood vessels of the eye die).
Benfotiamine supplements normalized AGE levels in the diabetics’ retina, as well as several key metabolic parameters within the diabetic animals’ cells – without influencing body weight or blood sugar (as measured by HbA1c). More importantly, Benfotiamine prevented the AGE-associated retinal damage. After nine months of diabetes, diabetic animals had suffered three times as many acellular capillaries as were found in healthy animals. But with the protection afforded by Benfotiamine, the number of acellular capillaries in the supplemented diabetics was indistinguishable from that of their normal, healthy cousins!
And there’s another AGE-related disease that researchers believe Benfotiamine may fight: the loss of kidney function which accompanies “normal” aging, and which is accelerated by diabetes. Dr. Paul Thornalley of the University of Essex has just completed a study designed to see if Benfotiamine will protect diabetic rodents against kidney damage. While the results have not yet been published, Dr. Thornalley has indicated that both megadose thiamin and Benfotiamine caused clear-cut reductions in the leakage of protein – with Benfotiamine showing itself to be the superior intervention. A second study is now underway to see if Benfotiamine will actually improve kidney function in diabetic animals with pre-existing kidney damage, as it has already been shown to do in the nerves of diabetic animals and humans.