Extracts from the Pau d’arco tree have many health benefits. They have antioxidant, antifungal, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties. Read more below to learn about this tree and its extracts.
Tabebuia avellanedae, also known as the Pau d’arco tree, is a large tree native to the Amazonian rainforest. There are many extracts that can be derived from the bark of this tree, primarily Taheebo and beta-lapachone.
Taheebo is mainly used as a tea supplement to improve health and physiology, whereas beta-lapachone has potent anti-cancer capabilities.
Health Benefits of Pau D’arco
1) Pau D’arco Fights Cancer Growth
Beta-lapachone inhibits blood vessel formation by suppressing tube formation in mouse endothelial cancer cells. It also increases Hsp90 cleavage which reduces tumor formation in heart cancer (R).
In patients with head and neck cancer, treatment with beta-lapachone increased the survivability of the patient by decreasing tumor expression and increasing the release of massive reactive oxygen species (R).
Treatment of human cancer cells with beta-lapachone can inhibit the spread of selective cancer without chemotherapy (R).
Beta-lapachone increasing the efficacy of chemotherapy drugs targeting cancer cells and tumors without destroying other vital tissues (R).
In human colon cancer cells, beta-lapachone increases the cytotoxicity of the cells and destroys their metabolic process, reducing the overall cancer symptoms (R).
In mice with lab-induced lung cancer, beta-lapachone suppressed the growth of solid tumors in the lungs (R).
2) Pau D’arco Fights Obesity
In mice suffering from estrogen deficiency-induced obesity, supplementation of Taheebo extract decreased cholesterol levels. It also reduced the overall fat accumulation in gut tissues (R).
Mice that had a high fat diet to simulate obesity were then treated with Taheebo. Taheebo significantly decreased serum levels of cholesterol, insulin, and leptin. Taheebo also increased fat metabolism in mice, reducing their obesity level (R).
3) Pau D’arco Has Anti-inflammatory Properties
In animals, 200 mg/kg of Taheebo extract increased the pain threshold and decreased overall inflammation. The extract reduced pain and other symptoms related to inflammation by 30 to 50 percent (R).
In mice, Taheebo suppresses PGE(2) production, which helps reduce inflammation (R).
4)Pau D’arco Is an Antibacterial and Antifungal Agent
Treatments of Taheebo on 10 different strains of human intestinal bacteria in a lab setting inhibited the growth and spread of those bacteria (R).
Treatment with beta-lapachone against fungi decreased the concentration of C. posadasii, mycelial H., capsulatum, and yeast-like H fungi by increasing cell permeability (R).
Beta-lapachone is successful at inhibiting resistant Staphylococcus aureus strains and reducing the symptoms of the infection (R).
5) Pau D’arco Has Antioxidant Properties
Beta-lapachone increases the expression of antioxidant enzyme genes by increasing NQO1-AMPK signaling (R).
Beta lapachone increased the activity of indolyl groups, which also helps its antioxidant properties (R).
- Beta-lapachone in vivo is converted into a metabolite that inhibits neoplastic cancer cells in human breast tissues (R).
- Base excision repair is a key pathway that promotes the cell viability of pancreatic cancer cells. Treatment with beta-lapachone on mice with pancreatic cancer silenced the base excision repair scaffolding protein and inhibited it from promoting cancer cell viability (R).
- In patients with aggressive types of large B-Cell lymphoma, MALT1 paracaspase is a key promoter. Beta-lapachone is also a key inhibitor of MALT1 paracaspase which in turn helps protect against the spread of lymphoma (R).
- A version of beta-lapachone named XJB-Lapachone used to target cancer mitochondria specifically increases cell apoptosis and decreases the level of mitochondrial-generated reactive oxygen species (R).
- Beta-lapachone reduces cell proliferation in oral squamous cell carcinoma and suppresses activation of transcription factors that lead to overall cell apoptosis (R).
Taheebo is a readily available supplement as a tea. It is best consumed once or twice daily, after a meal or as an afternoon drink. It is widely available for purchase, either alone as Taheebo or with other herbal teas.
Beta-lapachone requires a prescription by a doctor .
Due to cytotoxicity of Beta-lapachone, the doctor should moderate side effects that may present themselves. Overall, doses should be low for most of the treatments.
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