Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Boron and Rheumatoid Arthritis

As it came to pass I did some PubMed and internet research on boron. Maybe I did this because boron is so close to moron. I was interested in the capabilities of boron to reduce inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis as the autoimmune disease in rheumatology where most of the research is done, in as much the disease plays a vanguard role for other autoimmune diseases.

So what is boron? Boron is a chemical element and it’s a relatively rare element. Boric acid is antiseptic, antifungal, and antiviral. Bortezomib is a small molecule with a boron atom, a proteasome inhibitor, which is used in myeloma and a form of lymphoma, but which isn’t used in rheumatic diseases.

Boron is in all plant derived foods. "Total daily boron intake in normal human diets ranges from 2.1–4.3 mg boron/day." [for reference look at Wikipedia:]

R.A. Watson-Clarke and colleagues looked al boron in a study, already done in the late 1990ies: “Model studies directed toward the application of boron neutron capture therapy to rheumatoid arthritis: boron delivery by liposomes in rat collagen-induced arthritis.” [] Though they concluded that these “studies with boron neutron capture therapy for CIA suggest that this form of therapy may be feasible in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis”, nothing has emerged at the surface of congresses concerning this kind of therapy against rheumatoid arthritis.

F.A. Nielsen and T.R. Shuler studied the interaction between boron and calcium in rats: “Studies of the interaction between boron and calcium, and its modification by magnesium and potassium, in rats. Effects on growth, blood variables, and bone mineral composition.” [] Boron and calcium deprivation elevated plasma alkaline phosphatase activity and depressed femur calcium concentration. They concluded: “The findings show that there is a relationship between boron and calcium, but they do not clearly indicate the nature of the relationship. However, the data suggest that boron and calcium act on similar systems in the rat.”

I agree the data is flimsy. I haven’t found a study addressing the role of boron in rheumatoid arthritis. A lack of boron might have a negative effect in general health, though. Boron helps in storing calcium and magnesium, and supports functions of vitamin D. I think that there is enough reason to look for adequate boron intake. So where do get boron? Nuts like hazel and Brazil nuts, almonds, and walnuts are rich in boron. Try raisins, dried apricots, and dates. Celery, red kidney beans, cucumbers, beet root, dark leafy vegetables, and so one. You’ll find boron in quite a lot of veggies. As with all dietary information, foods should be tasty, recommendation can’t cover all foodstuffs, so you have to do a little homework if you want to increase your boron intake to a sufficient level.

1 comment:

  1. Good news for me as I eat the last Brazil nut and think of the walnuts under my desk. (I like to keep some food close to me)
    Thanks for the info