Rabu, 3 Oktober 2012

Iscador Mistletoe



Mistletoe, or Viscum album is a semi-parasitic plant that grows on oaks and other trees in Europe and Asia. Mistletoe is also found in America and Korea, but normally only the European species is used in the treatment of cancer, inflammatory conditions and AIDS. The leaves, twigs, and berries are what is used to make these herbal medicines. Because the medicinal doses are small (it can be poisonous in large doses), many believe it to be "homeopathic," but it isn't.

Mistletoe was first proposed for the treatment of cancer in 1920 by Rudolph Steiner, an Austrian Swiss physician who founded the Society for Cancer Research to promote mistletoe extracts and anthroposophical medicine.

Mistletoe extracts are marketed under several trade names, such as Iscador, Helixor, Eurixor, and Isorel, most of which are available in Europe. Weleda AG manufactures Iscador., which consists of fermented extracts of mistletoe, sometimes combined with trace amounts of silver, copper or mercury. In the United States, any of these extracts must be prescribed by a physician. However, most doctors in the US do not use it. Though mistletoe is not commonly used in the United States, it is allowed by compassionate use. Physicians in the United States can order Iscador directly from European manufacturers. Oral/liquid mistletoe can be ordered by your physician by contacting Weleda AG through www.usa.weleda.com or by calling 800-241-1030.

Some of the alternative physicians that use it include: San Diego Clinic and Stella Maris in Mexico, Dr. Jesse Stoff in Arizona, Atkins Center in NY, Lukas Clinic in Switzerland, Joseph Brenner, M.D. in Tel-Aviv, Klinik St George and Hufeland Clinic in Germany, and Humlegaarden in Denmark. If you are aware of any clinical trials using mistletoe or any other clinics using it, please email our webmaster to add this information to our website.

For a list of clinical trials using mistletoe, go to: http://www.foreigntrials.com/trials_list.html.

Mistletoe preparations are used to stimulate the immune system, to kill cancer cells, and to help reduce tumor size. It may also help improve the quality of life and survival of some cancer patients, especially those using chemo and radiation, and may help reduce pain and side effects of these treatments. In addition, a German study done by Dr. Ronald Grossarth-Maticek of the Institute for Preventive Medicine in Heidelberg shows that, when used as adjunctive treatment in patients with a variety of cancers, it can increase survival time by as much as 40%.

Typical Treatment:

A typical treatment course can last several months to years. The doses are gradually increased and adjusted depending on the patient's general condition, sex, age, and type of cancer. Mistletoe is typically given by subcutaneous injection, but it sometimes is injected directly into the tumor particularly on the liver, esophagus and cervix. It may also be taken orally in tumors of the brain and spinal cord.

What studies show:

In animal studies, mistletoe preparations have helped fight some forms of cancer. The best results with Iscador are claimed for its use with solid tumors both before and after surgery and radiation. Given 10 to 14 days before surgery, it is thought to help prevent metastatic spread due to surgery and to promote recovery and it is also used for advanced stage, inoperable solid tumors, especially cancers of the bladder, stomach, intestine, genital organs, and skin. It is also claimed that bone metastases are retarded in some cases. Results appear less promising for inoperable cancers of the breast, lungs and esophagus. It is thought that tumor growth slows or stops, and then gradual regression begins. It is believed that tumor cells are transformed first to a semi-malignant form, then to chronic inflammation and finally to normal tissue.

Mistletoe contains a cytotoxic lectin, viscumin. It also contains a number of cytotoxic proteins and polypetides (viscotoxins). Various lectins are both cytotoxic and immunostimulatory. It induces tumor necrosis, increases natural killer cell activity, increases production of interleukins 1 and 6; activates macrophages; induces programmed cell death (apoptosis), and protects DNA in normal cells during chemotherapy.

Side effects and possible risks:

Commercial mistletoe extracts generally have minimal side effects, but in rare cases allergic symptoms including anaphylactic reactions have been reported. It usually produces an increase in body temperature and flu-like symptoms. In addition, the injection site can become inflamed and abdominal pain with nausea may occur. Other side effects include: upset stomach, vomiting, diarrhea, chills, fever, headaches, chest pain, and low blood pressure. Overdoses, however, can cause severe poisoning including seizures, coma and death. Even a few leaves or berries can cause poisoning, so never eat part of a mistletoe plant and keep the plants away from animals and children. In addition, because the preparation contains tyramine, patients on any type of monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor antidepressant should not take it. The combination can cause dangerously high blood pressure. People with heart problems should also be careful, since it raises blood pressure and accelerates the pulse. Therapy is normally discontinued in case of high temperature over 38ÂșC. Some research indicates Iscador injections should not be administered during the first days of the menstrual period. Seizures and death have been reported. This product should only be used in a closely supervised setting, and should not be used for normal consumption - reasons mistletoe products must be prescribed by a physician.

To avoid potential interactions, be sure to let your health care provider know if you use this or any other type of complementary therapy, and always take under the advice and supervision of a health practioner.

For research or books on iscador/mistletoe, go to Lukas Clinic website at http://www.lukasklinik.ch/English/Default1.htm. They use these products in their treatment programs. Or, go to www.sph.uth.tmc.edu/utcam/summary/mistletoe.htm or http://commonweal.org/herbs.html.

If you have used this product, please contact our webmaster with information on your experience.


Most Cancer Patients Use Complementary Therapies

LONDON (Reuters) July 15, 2002 - More than half of all cancer patients are using complementary therapies to cope with the side effects of hospital-based therapies, according to a report published Sunday. Market consultant Datamonitor said as many as 60% of cancer patients in certain European countries, and 80% in the United States, used special diets, vitamin supplements, herbal remedies or acupuncture. It said European use of complementary and alternative medicines appeared highest in Germany where products such as mistletoe had become established folk remedies. Datamonitor estimated the global market for complementary and alternative medicines used by cancer patients could be as high as $18 billion annually, rivaling the sales of many traditional pharmaceutical approaches.

The report warned that information published on Web sites about herbal remedies was not always accurate and advised patients to consult a physician before using them. "Some herbal products or diets can affect how prescription cancer drugs are absorbed, or can increase certain side effects of mainstream cancer therapies," according to the report.

"Patients taking complementary medicines need to share their use of these products with their oncologist, for the patients' safety and for the patients' best chance of fighting cancer," it added.

The report forecast that increased scientific studies of alternative medicines could lead to the discovery of new drugs. Complementary medicine and pharmaceutical drug development could move closer to each other, perhaps resulting in novel therapies, new manufacturing companies and commercially successful partnerships.

Enzyme may Help Curb Disease

Jul. 19, 2002 (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- New research shows an enzyme that corrects mutations in genes could be a key factor in reducing a person's susceptibility to diseases such as hemophilia, cancer and cystic fibrosis. Researchers from Cardiff University in Wales and the University of Edinburgh in Scotland have found the MBD4 enzyme could protect people from gene mutations that can lead to diseases.

Different combinations of genes are expressed in different cells. For example, a different combination of genes is expressed in heart cells as compared to liver cells. Researchers say mutations in these genes can lead to serious diseases, such as cancer. They say, although factors such as cigarette smoke and dietary habits may trigger genetic mutations, a lot of gene damage is caused simply by the natural chemistry that goes on in the human body. When a mutation occurs, the genes stop doing their "jobs" effectively.

Researchers say one in three genetic changes or mutations that causes disease in people can be attributed to methyl-groups. Methyl-groups work to shut down genes, but in doing so significantly increase the risk of genetic mutation. Researchers have found the MBD4 enzyme attempts to repair the damage caused by methyl-groups before they cause harm.

Alan Clarke, a researcher from Cardiff University, says, "It is very likely the MBD4 is a key defense against self-inflicted gene damage in humans." In this study of lab animals, Professor Clarke and fellow researchers found mice lacking the MBD4 enzyme are up to three times more likely to have genetic mutations. Authors of the study conclude, "These findings suggest that human MBD4 plays a similarly important role in reducing inherited disease and cancer."


Use of Iscador, an extract of European mistletoe (Viscum album), in cancer treatment: prospective nonrandomized and randomized matched-pair studies nested within a cohort study.      Grossarth-Maticek R, Kiene H, Baumgartner SM, Ziegler R.



Institute for Preventive Medicine, European Center for Peace and Development, United Nations, Heidelberg, Germany.



In anthroposophical medicine, total extracts of Viscum album (mistletoe) have been developed to treat cancer patients. The oldest such product is Iscador. Although Iscador is regarded as a complementary cancer therapy, it is the most commonly used oncological drug in Germany.


To determine whether Iscador treatment prolongs survival time of patients with carcinoma of the colon, rectum, or stomach; breast carcinoma with or without axillary or remote metastases; or small cell or non-small-cell bronchogenic carcinoma; and to explore synergies between Iscador treatment and psychosomatic self-regulation.


Prospective nonrandomized and randomized matched-pair studies nested within a cohort study.


General community in Germany.


10,226 cancer patients involved in a prospective long-term epidemiological cohort study, including 1668 patients treated with Iscador and 8475 who had taken neither Iscador nor any other mistletoe product (control patients).




Survival time.


In the nonrandomized matched-pair study, survival time of patients treated with Iscador was longer for all types of cancer studied. In the pool of 396 matched pairs, mean survival time in the Iscador groups (4.23 years) was roughly 40% longer than in the control groups (3.05 years; P < .001). Synergies between Iscador treatment and self-regulation manifested in a longer survival advantage for Iscador patients with good self-regulation (56% relative to control group; P = .03) than for patients with poor self-regulation. Results of the 2 randomized matched-pair studies largely confirmed the results of the non-randomized studies.


Iscador treatment can achieve a clinically relevant prolongation of survival time of cancer patients and appears to stimulate self-regulation.



9.9.10: Please read this “new to us”article on Iscador

I often treat cancer with Iscador, an alternative and nontoxic therapy made from a lacto-fermented extract of mistletoe (Viscum album L.) This treatment is one of the most extensively studied complementary medical therapies, particularly in Europe where it has been used as an adjunctive therapy for solid tumor cancers. An early 2005 study confirms the safety of complementary Iscador therapy in patients with high-risk melanoma. Equally important, the Iscador users had a significantly improved length and quality of survival and fewer distant metastasis than those who didn’t use Iscador. See below to link to the abstract or download a Booklet (PDF format) about the study.

Because I like to provide information to people to help them better understand their conditions and their options, I have included below a selection of papers, studies and trials that have been conducted using mistletoe extract therapy. Click on the link at Abstract to read the full abstract at the National Center for Biotechnology Information’s National Library of Medicine website, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. At the bottom of this page, I also include several other websites with additional information and links on Iscador and cancer therapy.

I have had numerous requests from patients who are undergoing treatment for cancer, particularly Iscador therapy, who would like to talk with other patients about their experiences. We want to act as a conduit to put people in touch with one another so they can get more information and share stories. The focus of this discussion forum is on patients and their experiences. It will be wholly the effort of those who have an interest. I will not be involved in any way except as the initial facilitator for putting people together through a confidential email exchange.

Please note that this material is intended for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to replace consultation with a doctor.

Selected Papers Abstracts link to NCBI’s National Library of Medicine PubMed site


[Safety and efficacy of the long-term adjuvant treatment of primary intermediate- to high-risk malignant melanoma (UICC/AJCC stage II and III) with a standardized fermented European mistletoe (Viscum album L.) extract. Results from a multicenter, comparative, epidemiological cohort study in Germany and Switzerland.]Augustin M, Bock PR, Hanisch J, Karasmann M, Schneider B Department of Dermatology, University Hospital, University of Freiburg, Freiburg/Brsg (Germany) Arzneimittelforschung. 2005;55(1):38-49. Abstract Booklet(PDF format)
The objective of the study was to evaluate the safety and therapeutic efficacy of a long-term mistletoe therapy with Iscador within the scope of post-operative treatment in patients with mean- to high-risk primary malignant melanoma by comparison with a untreated parallel control group. Conclusion: a long-term Iscador treatment in patients with mean- to high-risk primary malignant melanoma appears to be safe.
PMID: 15727163


[Efficacy and safety of long-term complementary treatment with standardized European mistletoe extract (Viscum album L.) in addition to the conventional adjuvant oncologic therapy in patients with primary non-metastasized mammary carcinoma. Results of a multi-center, comparative, epidemiological cohort study in Germany and Switzerland] [Article in German]Bock PR, Friedel WE, Hanisch J, Karasmann M, Schneider B. Institut fur Angewandte Gesundheitsforschung, IFAG Basel AG, Basel, Schweiz.Arzneimittelforschung. 2004;54(8):456-66. Abstract Booklet (PDF format)
A study to evaluate the therapeutic efficacy and safety of long-term complementary therapy in primary, non-metastatic mammary carcinoma patients in UICC stage I-III with a standardized European mistletoe extract given in addition to conventional adjuvant oncologic therapy.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial, Multicenter Study, Randomized Controlled Trial
PMID: 15460213


Impact of complementary mistletoe extract treatment on quality of life in breast, ovarian and non-small cell lung cancer patients. A prospective randomized controlled clinical trial.Piao BK, Wang YX, Xie GR, Mansmann U, Matthes H, Beuth J, Lin HS. Guang An Men Hospital, Beijing, China.
Anticancer Res. 2004 Jan-Feb;24(1):303-9.
Abstract This study showed that complementary treatment with sME can beneficially reduce the side-effects of chemotherapy in cancer patients and thus improve quality of life.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial, Multicenter Study, Randomized Controlled Trial
PMID: 15015612


Differential effects of Viscum album extract Iscador(R)Qu on cell cycle progression and apoptosis in cancer cells.Harmsma M, Gromme M, Ummelen M, Dignef W, Tusenius KJ, Ramaekers FC. Department of Molecular Cell Biology, University of Maastricht, 6200 MD Maastricht, The Netherlands.
Int J Oncol. 2004 Dec;25(6):1521-9. Abstract This study tested the hypothesis that Iscador(R)Qu, an aqueous fermented extract from the European mistletoe grown on oaks, induces tumor regression by cell cycle inhibition and/or interference with apoptotic signaling pathways in cancer cells.
PMID: 15547686


Critical role of reactive oxygen species and mitochondrial membrane potential in korean mistletoe lectin-induced apoptosis in human hepatocarcinoma cells.Kim WH, Park WB, Gao B, Jung MH. Division of Metabolic Disease, Department of Biomedical Science, National Institutes of Health, #5 Nokbun-dong, Eunpyung-gu, Seoul 122-701, South Korea.
Mol Pharmacol. 2004 Dec;66(6):1383-96. Epub 2004 Aug 31.
Abstract Viscum album L. coloratum agglutinin (VCA), isolated from Korean mistletoe, is a strong inducer of apoptosis in a variety of tumor cells; however, the underlying molecular mechanisms responsible are not clear. This study shows that VCA induces apoptotic killing.
PMID: 15340045


Influence of postoperative complementary treatment with lectin-standardized mistletoe extract on breast cancer patients. A controlled epidemiological multicentric retrolective cohort study. Schumacher K, Schneider B, Reich G, Stiefel T, Stoll G, Bock PR, Hanisch J, Beuth J. Institut fuer Biometrie, Medizinische Hochschule Hannover, Konstanty-Gutschow-Str. 8, 30625 Hannover, Germany.
Anticancer Res. 2003 No v-Dec;23(6D):5081-7.
Abstract This epidemiological study was performed to evaluate the influence of postoperative complementary treatment with lectin-standardized mistletoe extract (sME) on breast cancer patients.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial, Multicenter Study, Randomized Controlled Trial
PMID: 14981970


Mistletoe and gemcitabine in patients with advanced cancer: a model for the phase I study of botanicals and botanical-drug interactions in cancer therapy. Mansky PJ, Grem J, Wallerstedt DB, Monahan BP, Blackman MR. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892-2669, USA
Integr Cancer Ther. 2003 Dec;2(4):345-52.
Abstract While the clinical efficacy of mistletoe in cancer is being investigated, toxicity and potential interactions of mistletoe with standard chemotherapeutic agents are unknown.
PMID: 14713326


Phase II study of viscum fraxini-2 in patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma.Mabed M, El-Helw L, Shamaa S. Hematology and Medical Oncology Unit, Faculty of Medicine, Mansoura University, Mansoura, Egypt
Br J Cancer. 2004 Jan 12;90(1):65-9.
Abstract This study was conducted to evaluate the efficacy and safety of viscum fraxini-2 in patients with chemotherapy-naive, advanced hepatocellular carcinoma.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial; Clinical Trial, Phase II
PMID: 14710208


The influence of isorel on the advanced colorectal cancer.Cazacu M, Oniu T, Lungoci C, Mihailov A, Cipak A, Klinger R, Weiss T, Zarkovic N. The 4th Surgical Clinic–University of Medicine and Pharmacy Iuliu Hatieganu, Romania.
Cancer Biother Radiopharm. 2003 Feb;18(1):27-34.
Abstract A study of a therapeutical approach of surgery and chemotherapy combined with biotherapy by Viscum album extract Isorel, aiming to improve the patients’ resistance to the disease and to render the treatment’s side effects more tolerable.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial, Randomized Controlled Trial
PMID: 12667306


[Blood and tissue eosinophilia, mistletoe lectin antibodies and quality of life in a breast cancer patient undergoing intratumoral and subcutaneous mistletoe therapy] [Article in German]Kroz M, Schad F, Matthes B, Pickartz H, Girke M. Forschungsinstitut Havelhohe am Gemeinschaftskrankenhaus Havelhohe, Germany.
Forsch Komplementarmed Klass Naturheilkd. 2002 Jun;9(3):160-7.
Abstract Study of Mistletoe therapy (MT) as a method of complementary medicine, using high-dose intratumoral application. Publication Types: Case Reports
PMID: 12119512


Mistletoe viscotoxins increase natural killer cell-mediated cytotoxicity. Tabiasco J, Pont F, Fournie JJ, Vercellone A. Institut National de la Sante et de la Recherche Medicale U563 and Service de spectrometrie de masse de l’ IFR 30, CHU Purpan, BP3028, Toulouse, France.
Eur J Biochem. 2002 May;269(10):2591-600. Abstract Study to show that nontoxic concentrations of Viscum album extracts increase natural killer (NK) cell-mediated killing of tumor cells but spare nontarget cells from NK lysis.
PMID: 12027898


Induction of apoptosis of endothelial cells by Viscum album: a role for anti-tumoral properties of mistletoe lectins.Van Huyen JP, Bayry J, Delignat S, Gaston AT, Michel O, Bruneval P, Kazatchkine MD, Nicoletti A, Kaveri SV. INSERM U430, Hopital Broussais, Paris, France.
Mol Med. 2002 Oct;8(10):600-6.
Abstract Study that tests the hypothesis that VA extracts induce endothelial cell death and apoptosis.
PMID: 12477970


[Frequency of the common cold in healthy subjects during exposure to a lectin-rich and a lectin-poor mistletoe preparation in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study] [Article in German]Huber R, Klein R, Ludtke R, Werner M. Ambulanz fur Naturheilverfahren/Abteilung Innere Medizin II, Universitatsklinikum Freiburg i.Br.
Forsch Komplementarmed Klass Naturheilkd. 2001 Dec;8(6):354-8.
Abstract Mistletoe preparations have immunomodulatory properties in vitro and in vivo. This study investigates whether or not these properties have an effect on the frequency of the common cold in healthy subjects.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial, Randomized Controlled Trial
PMID: 11799303


Use of Iscador, an extract of European mistletoe (Viscum album), in cancer treatment: prospective nonrandomized and randomized matched-pair studies nested within a cohort study.Grossarth-Maticek R, Kiene H, Baumgartner SM, Ziegler R. Institute for Preventive Medicine, European Center for Peace and Development, United Nations, Heidelberg, Germany.
Altern Ther Health Med. 2001 May-Jun;7(3):57-66, 68-72, 74-6 passim.
Abstract Study to determine whether Iscador treatment prolongs survival time of patients with carcinomas and to explore synergies between Iscador treatment and psychosomatic self-regulation.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial, Multicenter Study, Randomized Controlled Trial
PMID: 11347286


Potentiation of tumor necrosis factor-alpha-induced apoptosis by mistletoe lectin.Pae HO, Seo WG, Oh GS, Shin MK, Lee HS, Lee HS, Kim SB, Chung HT. Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Wonkwang University School of Medicine, Iksan, Korea. Immunopharmacol Immunotoxicol. 2000 Nov;22(4):697-709.
Abstract Mistletoe lectins (MLs) constitute the active principle in extract preparations from mistletoe, commonly used as immunomodulator in adjuvant tumor therapy.
PMID: 11105782


[Mistletoe extracts in the therapy of malignant, hematological and lymphatic diseases--a monocentric, retrospective analysis over 16 years] [Article in German] Stumpf C, Rosenberger A, Rieger S, Troger W, Schietzel M. Forsch Komplementarmed Klass Naturheilkd. Krebsforschung Herdecke e.V., Gemeinschaftskrankenhaus Herdecke. 2000 Jun;7(3):139-46.
Abstract A study to investigate potentials risks of treatment with mistletoe extracts in patients with malignant haematological and lymphatic diseases.
PMID: 10899748


Activation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase 1 (JNK1) in mistletoe lectin II-induced apoptosis of human myeloleukemic U937 cells. Park R, Kim MS, So HS, Jung BH, Moon SR, Chung SY, Ko CB, Kim BR, Chung HT. Department of Microbiology, Professional Graduate School of Oriental Medicine, Wonkwang University School of Medicine, 570-749, Iksan Chonbuk, South Korea. Biochem Pharmacol. 2000 Dec 1;60(11):1685-91.
Abstract Study of extracts of mistletoe (Viscum album var. coloratum) and the mechanism by which the plant extracts kill tumor cells has remained elusive.
PMID: 11077051


Biological effects of natural and recombinant mistletoe lectin and an aqueous mistletoe extract on human monocytes and lymphocytes in vitro. Elsasser-Beile U, Voss M, Schuhle R, Wetterauer U. Department of Urology, University of Freiburg, Germany.Clin Lab Anal. 2000;14(6):255-9.
Abstract A study to compares the immunological potency of different well-defined mistletoe lectin preparations on human immune cells.
PMID: 11138605


Hypereosinophilia induced by high-dose intratumoral and peritumoral mistletoe application to a patient with pancreatic carcinoma. Huber R, Barth H, Schmitt-Graff A, Klein R. Center for Complementary Medicine, Department of Gastroenterology, University of Freiburg, Germany.J Altern Complement Med. 2000 Aug;6(4):305-10.
Abstract Study of a patient with inoperable adenocarcinoma of the pancreas treated with intraperitumoral and peritumoral injections of a mistletoe extract.
Publication Types: Case Reports
PMID: 10976976


Antitumoral effects of an intravesically applied aqueous mistletoe extract on urinary bladder carcinoma MB49 in mice. Mengs U, Schwarz T, Bulitta M, Weber K. Madaus AG, Ostmerheimer Strasse 198, D-51109 Koln, Germany.Anticancer Res. 2000 Sep- Oct;20(5B):3565-8.
Abstract Study to investigate the effects of a locally applied aqueous mistletoe extract on the growth of urinary bladder carcinoma.
PMID: 11131663


Tolerability of an extract of European mistletoe among immunocompromised and healthy individuals. Gorter RW, van Wely M, Reif M, Stoss M. University of California, San Francisco, USA. Altern Ther Health Med. 1999 Nov;5(6):37-44, 47-8.
Study to determine the toxicity profile and biochemical effects of a Viscum album extract.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial, Review, Tutorial
PMID: 10550904


Insulin-secreting activity of the traditional antidiabetic plant Viscum album (mistletoe). Gray AM, Flatt PR. School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Ulster, Coleraine, Northern Ireland BT52 1SA, UK. J Endocrinol. 1999 Mar;160(3):409-14.
Study of effects and presence of insulin-releasing natural product(s) in Viscum album which may contribute to the reported antidiabetic property of the plant.
PMID: 10076186


[Mistletoe therapy from the pharmacologic perspective] [Article in German] Hajto T, Hostanska K, Saller R. Abteilung Naturheilkunde, Departement Innere Medizin, Universitatsspital Zurich, Schweiz. Forsch Komplementarmed. 1999 Aug;6(4):186-94.
Study of experimental data that suggest that the mistletoe lectins Viscum album agglutinin (VAA)-I and -II are play an important role in the efficacy of mistletoe therapy.
Publication Types: Review, Academic Review
PMID: 10529578


[Iscador QuS and human recombinant interferon alpha (Intron A) in cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN)] [Article in Polish] Jach R, Basta A. Katedry i Kliniki Ginekologii i Onkologii Collegium Medicum Uniwersytetu Jagiellonskiego w Krakowie. Przegl Lek. 1999;56(1):86-8 Abstract
The aim of this work was the evaluation of the Iscador QuS and Intron A role in the management of HPV associated CIN.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial, Controlled Clinical Trial
PMID: 10375935


Direct and rapid induction of migration in human CD4+ T lymphocytes within three-dimensional collagen matrices mediated by signalling via CD3 and/or CD2. Nikolai G, Niggemann B, Werner M, Zanker KS, Friedl P. Institute of Immunology, University of Witten/Herdecke, D-58448 Witten, Germany. Immunology. 1998 Sep;95(1):62-8.
Study of specific activation of T cells which require stable cell-cell interaction; however, little is known how the transition from a previously motile state into a sessile state following activation is achieved.
PMID: 9767458


[What prospects of success does Iscador therapy offer in advanced ovarian cancer?] [Article in German] Hassauer W, Gutsch J, Burkhardt R. Onkologie. 1979 Feb;2(1):28-36. Abstract
A study of the carcinostatic effect of Iscador in the treatment of carcinoma of the ovary.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial
PMID: 392367


[Investigation to improve the survival of patients with bronchial carcinomas "radically operated" (author's transl)] [Article in German] Salzer G.Z Erkr Atmungsorgane. 1975 Feb;142(2):127-31. Abstract
Postoperative treatment (using Iscador) of patients with successfully resected bronchial carcinoma is described.
PMID: 1226878

Weleda’s website has useful information on their product, Iscador, including information on published data and articles.

The Townsend Letter for Doctors and Patients (October 2002)

Article on Mistletoe Extracts & Cancer Therapy[Mistletoe (Viscum album) preparations: an optional drug for cancer patients?]

[Article in Hebrew] Bar-Sela G, Gershony A, Haim N. Department of Oncology, Rambam Medical Center and Faculty of Medicine, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel. g_barsela@rambam.health.gov.il Extracts and preparations from the parasitic plant mistletoe (Viscum album L.) have been used in the treatment of cancer for decades. Mistletoe treatment for cancer was introduced in 1920 by Steiner and Wegman, founders of the Anthroposophical medical method. Today, mistletoe extracts are the most frequently prescribed unconventional cancer therapies in Germany, as in some other European countries. Full clinical data about the efficacy of the mistletoe preparations is still missing. The preparations are usually given as subcutaneous injections, but other routes of administration are also used. Numerous preclinical and in-vitro studies have reported immunostimulatory, cytotoxic and proapoptotic effects. More than 15 prospective clinical trials using mistletoe extracts in patients with different malignancies have been reported. In most of these studies the authors reported that mistletoe extracts had therapeutic benefit in terms of response rate, overall survival, quality of life and reduction in side-effects of the oncological treatment. Unfortunately, almost all of these reported studies had at least one major weakness that questioned their reliability. Side effects of the different mistletoe preparation used in human studies are generally minimal and non-life threatening. In the current review recent studies, including two phase II studies from our center, are included. In the future, data that will be obtained from good quality studies might facilitate reaching firm conclusions regarding the therapeutic benefit of mistletoe preparation for oncological treatment.




Mistletoe is widely prescribed immune therapy used in treating cancer patients in Europe both as concurrent therapy with chemotherapy and as adjuvant treatment. Subcutaneous injections of mistletoe lectins have been studied in over 25 cancer clinical trials in Europe, Russia and other countries, but thus far not in the U.S. The bulk of the data suggests anti-tumor activity across several tumor types. In Europe, mistletoe remains one the most extensively studied herbal preparations with over 1,000 published scientific articles. Mistletoe products are sold as Iscador, Helixor, Abnoba viscum, Isorel, Eurixor, and Plenosol. Preclinical studies have shown cytotoxic, carcinostatic and immunomodulatory effects both in vitro and in vivo on a variety of tumor cells. Clinical studies have also shown cytotoxic effects of mistletoe over various tumor types. Most of these studies report improvements in response, survival and/or 'quality of life' although many of these reports were of less than ideal designs (i.e. small studies, lack of randomization or lack of appropriate assessment of clinical improvement).




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