Health News: Samento (Cat’s Claw) is Producing Good Outcomes for
Those with Lyme Disease
Although West Nile virus seems to be getting all of the media
coverage lately, some encouraging news for those with Lyme Disease has surfaced – yes, Lyme disease is alive and well, thank you.
A pilot study was recently conducted with 28 patients suffering from advanced chronic Lyme disease. All the patients
tested positive for the disease using the Western Blot blood test for Borrelia Burgdorferi, the bacteria that causes
Lyme disease – which can also cause, mimic, or be a contributing factor to more than 300 other conditions.
Unresponsive to Antibiotics
A control group was treated with conventional antibiotic treatment. At the end of the study all the patients in
this group continued to test positive for Borrelia. None of the patients experienced an improvement in their clinical
condition and, in fact, some got worse.
Samento Group Improved
An experimental group was treated with Samento,
also known as TOA-Free Cat’s
Claw. At the end of the study, 85% of the patients in this group tested negative for Borrelia, and all the patients
experienced a dramatic improvement in their clinical condition. A full report of the study, showing positive results
of reducing the infection also related to over 300 other conditions besides Lyme disease, is to be available soon.
Poas Preferred Over Toas
Samento is a rare chemotype of a medicinal plant commonly known as TOA-Free Cat’s Claw. Its botanical name is Uncaria
tomentosa. Unlike traditional Cat’s Claw products, it does not contain chemical antagonists called tetracyclicoxindole
TOAs act upon the central nervous system greatly inhibiting the positive effect of the pentacyclic oxindole alkaloids
(POAs), which primarily affect the immune cells responsible for non-specific and cellular immunity, and demonstrate
powerful immune system modulating properties. TOAs can cause a 30% reduction in immune system modulating properties
that POAs provide. Samento contains a standardized amount of POAs.
How Borrelia Exists
The latest research on Borrelia burgdorferi (Bb) shows that it exists in at least three different forms: the spirochete,
the spheroplast (also known as L-Form), and the cyst form. During the course of infection, Bb can shift among these
three forms, converting from the spirochete form to the others when presented with an unfavorable environment (antibiotics,
changes in pH of body fluids in chronic inflammation, etc.). It then reverts back to the spirochete form to grow
and reproduce upon being released from naturally aging and dying infected cells. It is during the growth period after
reconversion to the spirochete form, as well as in adult spirochete form, that Bb is most vulnerable and susceptible
to antibiotics and natural elimination by the body’s immune system.
The severity of Lyme disease is directly related to the spirochete load: low load results in mild or even asymptomatic
infections. With increased spirochete load from subsequent repeated infections and/or reactivated dormant infections,
the severity of the disease increases. Higher loads also impair key cells of the immune system and modify the immune
response, thus making the immune system unable to fight the pathogen. The negative effects on the immune system increase
the longer the spirochetes are present.
To fight Lyme
Disease, it is necessary to not only restore the immune system to normal functioning, but to boost it. Even
a normal functioning immune system is unable to attack and eliminate Bb in all its forms.
How Samento Works
The results of research on Samento demonstrate its powerful immune system modulating and stimulating properties,
along with its pronounced anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-infectious effects. The diverse spectrum of the
biological activities of Samento is due to its biologically active compounds. The POAs contained in this chemotype
are generally accepted as the principal immunomodulating and immunostimulating agents.
POAs are actively involved in the repairing of immunity damaged by Borrelia and other co-infections, assisting in
restoring the immune system, enhancing its ability to eliminate the pathogens by natural way.
In addition, this chemotype contains quinovic acid glycosides – compounds with strong natural antibiotic properties
(the latest generations of conventional synthetic antibiotics named Quinolones are based on quinovic acid glycosides),
which further enhance the medicinal effect of Samento in fighting the infection.
Taking into account the lifetime of intracellular forms, it can be assumed that continuous use of Samento for eight
to 12 months would kill and eliminate Borrelia, as well as any other infections, restoring the person’s health.
History of Lyme Disease
Lyme disease was first recognized in the United States in 1975, following a mysterious outbreak of juvenile rheumatoid
arthritis near the community of Lyme, Connecticut.
The rural location of the Lyme outbreak and the onset of illness during summer and early fall suggested that the
transmission of the disease be by an arthropod vector. In 1982, the etiologic agent of Lyme disease was discovered
Methods of Lyme Disease Transmission
In addition to ticks, it has been learned that Borrelia may be carried and transmitted by fleas, mosquitoes and
mites. Also it is not exclusively vector-borne. Humans have been known to pass the disease through breast-feeding
and blood transfusions. Also the possibility exists that Lyme disease can be food infection.
Number of Cases
Lyme disease is the fastest-growing epidemic in the world. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta, Ga.,
USA, affirms that “there is considerable underreporting” of Lyme disease, maintaining that the actual infection
rate may be 1.8 million, 10 times higher than the 180,000 cases currently reported. Nick Harris, Ph.D., director
of the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS), states “Lyme is grossly under-reported. In
the U.S., we probably have about 200,000 cases per year.”
Considering vector, congenital and sexual transfer, it is estimated that 15.5% of the global population, nearly
1 billion people, could be infected with Borrelia. The Sierra Integrative Medicine Clinic in Reno, Nev. states that “Authorities
estimate that up to 90 percent of the population could be carrying the Lyme spirochete and that Lyme is a factor
in over 50 percent of chronic illnesses.”
Katrina Tang, MD, HMD, founder and director of research at the Sierra Integrative Medicine Clinic, states that Lyme
disease eludes doctors because of its ability to mimic many other diseases. For example, according to an informal
study conducted by the American Lyme Disease Alliance (ALDA), most patients diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
(CFS) are actually suffering from Lyme disease. In a study of 31 patients diagnosed with CFS, 28 patients, or 90.3%,
were found to be ill as a result of Lyme.
Paul Fink, MD, MS, past president of the American Psychiatric Association, has acknowledged that Lyme disease can
contribute to every psychiatric disorder in the Diagnostic Symptoms Manual IV (DSM-IV). This manual is used to diagnose
psychiatric conditions such as attention deficit disorder (ADD), antisocial personality, Anorexia
Nervosa, Autism and
Aspergers syndrome (a form of autism), to name a few.
Lyme Borreliosis causes, mimics, is manifested as, is misdiagnosed as, or is a contributing factor to more than
300 conditions, such as:
- Acute coronary syndrome
- Acute Meningitis
- Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS)
- Bell’s Palsy
- Bipolar Disorder
- Brain Tumor
- Brown recluse spider bite
- Cardiac Disease
- Coronary aneurysm
- Fetal death
- Infectious Mononucleosis
- Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Peripheral Facial Palsy
- Sudden Infant Death (SIDS)
- Tourette’s Syndrome
Impact of Weakened Immune System
It is believed that years can pass before symptoms appear in a patient that has been infected with Borrelia. In
1998, a study conducted in Switzerland demonstrated that only 12.5% of the patients that tested positive for Borrelia
developed clinical symptoms confirming that Borrelia burgdorferi infection is often asymptomatic.
A report from Germany outlines the case of a 12-year-old boy that developed Lyme Arthritis five years after being
bit by a tick. The case indicates that the latency period between tick bite and onset of Lyme Arthritis may last
up to five years.
All asymptomatic carriers of Borrelia are at risk of developing Lyme disease at some point. Stress,
an increasing health concern worldwide, may have been the trigger that activated Lyme disease in a patient in Sweden.
The case is reported of a 26-year-old woman with latent Lyme Borreliosis that was concurrently activated with a Herpes simplex
virus type 1 infection. Immune suppression by stress may have caused activation of both infections.
Prevalent on Six Continents
Lyme disease, known as Borreliosis in much of the world, is prevalent on six continents and recognized as an epidemic
in many countries. In Bulgaria, where there is a high incidence of Lyme disease, Atanas Tzonkov, MD, director of
Bulgaria’s largest private medical clinic, has treated thousands of patients with Samento. He reports that it has
been used successfully to treat over 100 conditions.
Samento in The Health Care Setting
According to an article published in the Summer 2002 issue of British Naturopathic Journal, “Ninety-Eight percent
of patients being treated using a rare Peruvian medicinal plant showed clinical improvement.” That rare plant
At a Samento Conference held May 10, 2002, in Florida, Brian Lamb, medical herbalist from Scotland, reported that
100% of the terminally ill patients he is treating with Samento are showing remarkable clinical improvement. Professor
Henk Oswald, MD, PhD, expounded on his experience of the use of Samento in the treatment of cancer. Michael Coyle
demonstrated Samento’s use as an antimicrobial agent.
Samento has also performed well in the primary care setting, as evidenced at East Aiken Health Center in Aiken,
South Carolina. The dosing schedule used in all cases, unless otherwise stated, was three 600mg per oral capsules
of Samento twice a day for 10 days. Thereafter dosage was decreased to two 600mg capsules twice a day. Samento was
taken on an empty stomach, by itself. Other supplementation (vitamins/minerals) was taken with meals. Concurrent
usage of other herbs was discouraged as it was felt that other herbs might contain alkaloids with a blocking effect
similar to the tetracyclic oxindole alkaloids (TOAs.)
Beginning in March 2002 and continuing to date, over 60 patients have been treated with Samento.
Conditions treated, in addition to Lyme disease, include:
- Chronic Fatigue
- Status Post Cerebrovascular Accident
- Chronic Back Pain
- Status Post Breast Cancer
- Irritable Bowel
- Menopausal Syndrome
- Pre Menstrual Syndrome
- Peptic Ulcer Disease
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
Several case studies have been selected and were presented to illustrate the amazing scope of illnesses that are
being successfully treated with Samento at the clinic. In these cases and others, the following has been constantly
- Increased energy – This in particular has been gratifying when used with chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia
- Sense of well being/lifting of brain fog – Current studies are underway but this finding appears to be related
to the anticoagulant properties of Samento. Patients suffering from chronic cold hands and feet seem to make the
most gain here. Also to be explored would be a positive effect on infertility, especially when coupled with Peruvian
- Decreased inflammation – Here there might be a transient exacerbation of symptoms, then a marked improvement.
The only patient in the clinic who has not shown improvement was one who stopped taking Samento when her symptoms
worsened. There was no way to get this patient to understand the concept of a healing crisis.
- Decreasing blood pressure – Almost all of the anti-hypertension patients have been able to lower their dosage
of anti-hypertension medication. None have been able to discontinue the anti-hypertension medication altogether,
at least not at this point in time.
- Decreasing blood sugar – All the diabetic patients have had mild lowering of fasting blood sugars (around 10
to 20 points.)
- Increased diuresis – All of the patients have experienced a mild diuretic effect.
Adverse clinical findings include:
- Lower extremity cramping – this is easily alleviated when presented by either/or calcium supplementation and
a good multivitamin/mineral combination.
- Several patients have experienced healing crises. In fact, individual patients have experienced multiple “mini-crises” with
continued use of Samento. No patient has required hospitalization while on Samento.
- One patient experienced a severe immediate Gastritis.
The dose was lowered to 250mg each day instead of a normal starting dose of 1800mg twice a day. Within two weeks
the maximum dose was tolerated. Gastrointestinal complaints have been resolved. This patient’s presenting complaint
was chronic migraine headache. No change has been noted yet in the severity or frequency of the headaches.
- Skin rash – Several of the patients experienced transient photosensitive skin rashes, none requiring any treatment
other than time.
Samento Applied to Other Illnesses
In conclusion, as the several case studies illustrate, Samento has demonstrated in the clinic to be a safe natural
remedy with a wide range of therapeutic efficacy, patients continue to show remarkable clinical improvement. As experience
and confidence with the use of Samento grows, the clinic is applying Samento to an expanding list of clinical illnesses.
By Patti Kantor, Herbal Remedies