Homeopathy 2019; 108(01): 012-023
DOI: 10.1055/s-0038-1670675
Original Research Article
The Faculty of Homeopathy

Biological Actions, Electrical Conductance and Silicon-Containing Microparticles of Arsenicum Album Prepared in Plastic and Glass Vials

Luciane Costa Dalboni
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Cideli de Paula Coelho
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
2  Graduating Program of Animal Medicine and Welfare, Universidade de Santo Amaro – UNISA, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Renata Rossettini Palombo Pedro
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Michelle Sanchez Correia
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Fabiana Rodrigues de Santana
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Thayná Neves Cardoso
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Sandra Augusta G. Pinto
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Anuska M. Alvares-Saraiva
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Maristela Dutra-Correa
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Giovani B. Peres
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Carla Holandino
3  Faculty of Pharmacy, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
,
André Rossi
3  Faculty of Pharmacy, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
,
Amarilys de Toledo César
4  Farmácia HN Cristiano, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Silvia Waisse
5  Graduating Program of History of Science, Pontifícia Universidade Católica de São Paulo, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
,
Leoni Villano Bonamin
1  Research Center, Graduating Program of Environmental and Experimental Pathology, Universidade Paulista – UNIP, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
› Author Affiliations
Funding We thank the Brazilian Association of Homeopathic Pharmacists (Associação Brasileira de Farmacêuticos Homeopatas—ABFH) for funding the study and CAPES-PROSUP (number 1678566) for the PhD grant.
Further Information

Publication History

20 June 2017

06 August 2018

Publication Date:
05 October 2018 (online)

Abstract

Introduction According to the “silica hypothesis” formulated to explain homeopathy, the information of starting materials would be transferred to cells by silica nanoparticles detached from the glassware walls by serial dilution and agitation through epitaxy. We compared the biological activity, electrical current and silicon microparticle content (by means of scanning electron microscopy/energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy) of high dilutions (HDs) of arsenic prepared in plastic and glass vials to investigate the role of silica in their biological effects in vitro.

Materials and Methods Co-cultures of macrophages and yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) were treated with different HDs of arsenic prepared in plastic and glass vials. Macrophage morphology, phagocytosis index, nitric oxide (NO), and cytokine production were evaluated.

Results Measurable amounts of silicon microparticles were detected only in the HDs prepared in glass vials, but ultra-centrifugation eliminated them. Specific and non-specific results were observed. Non-specific pro-inflammatory effects were seen in all dilutions prepared in plastic vials, including elevation of pro-inflammatory cytokines, NO and macrophage phagocytic index. Only the 200th centesimal dilution of arsenic produced specific decrease in interleukin-6 production in macrophages, and it was independent of the vial type or the presence of microparticles of silica in the medicine samples. The nature of the vials had an impact on the electric flow in the respective fluids.

Conclusion The non-specific, pro-inflammatory effects might be attributed to organic residuals detached from the vials' plastic walls during manipulation. Instead, specific silica-independent effects of the homeopathic medicine can be attributed to the decrease of interleukin-6 after treatment with the 200th centesimal dilution of arsenic.

Highlights

Arsenicum album 200 cH decreases specifically IL-6 expression in macrophages in vitro.


• Silicon content in microparticles found in Arsenicum album has no relation to specific biological effects.


• Remedies prepared in plastic vials presented non-specific pro-inflammatory action.


• Decrease in IL-6 was independent of the material of the vials and/or of the silica microparticle content.


• The nature of the vials seems to influence the electric flow in the respective fluids.