Folio November 4, 2005
Volume 42 Number 12 Edmonton, Canada November 4, 2005

Herbal treatment cuts colds by half

Study proves effectiveness of COLD-fX

by Beverly Betkowski
Folio Staff
Dr. Tapan Basu's research shows that the ginseng-based herbal remedy COLD-fX is a powerful weapon against the common cold.
Dr. Tapan Basu's research shows that the ginseng-
based herbal remedy COLD-fX is a powerful weapon
against the common cold.

A breakthrough product developed to combat colds and flu has been proven to significantly cut the incidence, duration and severity of the common cold.

Clinical trial results, appearing in the current issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal, show that the anti-cold, anti-flu remedy COLD-fX reduced the incidence and frequency of recurrent colds by more than half. It also cut the duration of colds and significantly reduced their severity.

The double-blind, placebo-controlled study on the prevention and relief of upper-respiratory infections was conducted on COLD-fX by Dr. Tapan Basu of the University of Alberta and by Dr. Gerry Predy, Edmonton's Medical Officer of Health for Capital Health.

The results are "statistically highly significant," said Basu, a professor in the U of A Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutritional Science.

The number of upper-respiratory infections in each subject was reduced by 25 per cent in the COLD-fX group during the four-month treatment period. Even more impressive however, was the finding that recurrent infections were reduced by 56 per cent (10 per cent in the COLD-fX group as opposed to 22.8 per cent in the placebo group, an absolute difference of 12.8 per cent). COLD-fX treatment also had a significant effect in reducing overall symptoms and the duration of infections.

The study involved 323 adults between the ages of 18 and 65 who'd had at least two upper-respiratory infections in the previous year. Participants were given either COLD-fX or a placebo for four months during the winter of 2003/04. Subjects graded the severity and duration of their respiratory-related symptoms on a four-point scale.

Regular use of COLD-fX was shown to be effective not only for the prevention of upper-respiratory infections, but also for relief of symptoms if an infection did occur. The results were similar to those observed in previous clinical studies on the cold remedy.

"One of biggest challenges in clinical studies with natural-based compounds is the lack of standardization of the testing material. Most natural health products do not offer batch-to-batch consistency and do not produce consistent clinical results. This trial was unique in that it examined a unique natural extract with the same rigor used for conducting trials of drug candidates in the pharmaceutical industry, a practice that is rarely found in the natural health product business," Basu noted.

"We are interested in the potential positive implications for our residents and the results from clinical trials done to date are encouraging," said Predy. "For example, in participants taking COLD-fX daily for prevention, recurrent infections were reduced by more than half. In addition, there was a 31-per-cent reduction in the severity of their symptoms."

"This is the first publicly known study to be completed under the new regulations established by Health Canada's Natural Health Product Directorate," said Dr. Jacqueline Shan, who studied at the U of A before co-founding U of A spin-off company CV Technologies Inc. and becoming CEO, Chief Scientific Officer and co-discoverer of COLD-fX.

A multi-centre and multi-dosage, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial on COLD-fX involving 720 healthy seniors was launched this month in Canada. This trial is being jointly conducted by Predy and other Canadian researchers.

COLD-fX is a commercially available natural health product developed and manufactured by CV Technologies. It is the result of more than 10 years of scientific and clinical research by a team of 25 scientists and is the top-selling cold/flu remedy in Canada according to ACNielsen.