PPC – What is it?
PPC is an extract of pinecones. “PPC” is an abbreviation for its chemical name (a polyphenylpropenoid-polysaccharide complex).
PPC - How was it developed?
An extract of pinecone has been used as a folk remedy in a southern island of Japan for several centuries. Boiling pinecones in a kettle produced the extract, which was then used to treat health problems such as flu, stomach ulcers and cancer. Even earlier evidence comes from around the 5th century AD. The Greek physician, Dioscorides, who traveled with the Roman army, collected healing recipes and medicinal herbs. The use of a pinecone extract is documented in his records.
PPC – How does it work?
Our scientists know with some certainty that a key component of the immune system, dendritic cells (essentially the “generals” of our immune system’s “army” of cells), can be stimulated by the presence of PPC. When a patient is in a weakened state (e.g. by the onset of disease or by the administration of chemotherapy), optimizing the body’s innate immune system results in faster recoveries. Experiments with cell cultures and studies in mice indicate that PPC has biological activity against some types of cancer, infectious diseases and certain autoimmune disorders.
As soon as DCs recognize a foreign invader or abnormality, i.e. infectious agents, cancer or an immune disorder, they send “troops” (other immune cells) to eradicate the problem. This process is enhanced by PPC. The precise mechanism of this enhancement is still under investigation. At this time we are actively conducting research to gain a fuller understanding of the specific interactions occurring between the DCs and the “troops” under their command (macrophages, natural killer cells, etc.) and the way PPC exerts its effect.
Dendritic cells influence all aspects of the immune system, and thus are a fundamental target and tool of vaccination therapies. Vaccines against cancer seek to activate tumor-specific T-cells, and the ability of dendritic cells to regulate T-cell function opens a possible pathway to new cancer therapeutics. Specific antigens (“profiles of the enemy”) as delivered by dendritic cells have been shown to elicit the desired immune response in human cancer patients. To learn more about your immune system and how it functions, please visit the National Cancer Institute's site on Understanding the Immune System.
PPC – Anecdotal reports
Anecdotal evidence in humans taking PPC has significantly confirmed our laboratory results. To date, after more than 20 years of use in the U.S., PPC has shown no detectable toxicity in humans. We have observed a number of volunteer patients who are in the late stages of cancer. Many have experienced significant improvements through combination therapies, i.e. chemotherapy and/or radiation along with PPC. It may significantly reduce tumor burden in late-stage cancers. From among a number of case histories:
The size of a 12- year-old boy’s lung tumor was markedly diminished after two months of PPC administration. The surgeon subsequently found that his remaining cancer cells were actually necrotic (dead) tissue.
Seven years ago, a 46-year-old man faced terminal-stage lymphoma. With interferon treatment and PPC administration, his recovery was impressive and quite unexpected. Indeed, his physician stated he was “off the charts” and his results were “unbelievable.”
It should be noted, however, that although anecdotal information may be collected and studied, TBRI does not consider it a substitute for clinical trials to be conducted in a standard manner. There is a monumental task ahead of us to learn more about the potential therapeutic applications of PPC, but progress will depend in large part on our financial resources.