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We started fooling around with the stuff in Hawaii a few years back. Seems
only natural as it is being produced here in Hawaii. It seems like it does
enhance the color of many fish, but a friend of mine that breeds killies
noted that egg production dropped way down and fish that were normally very
peaceful started to fight, lots of ragged torn fins, etc. It seemed like it
enhanced aggression as well to the point that spawning stopped. We sort of
suspected that it enhanced the colors too well and gave all the males the
appearance of a threatening display that could not be turned off. Also it
was tried on frogs and they seemed to develop kidney problems. May all be a
problem with dosage, but I would keep this in mind...
----- Original Message -----
From: <tgenade at sun_ac.za>
To: "AKA Killietalk (E-mail)" <killietalk at aka_org>
Sent: Monday, April 28, 2003 1:26 AM
> Hello all
> A little something to read and digest... there is some comentaty at the
end by me so if you like you can just skip this bit:
> "A powerful anti-oxidant derived from red algae has produced "spectacular"
results in a pilot study of its efficacy as an infertility treatment, say
Belgian researchers. Although they warn the study is small and needs to be
replicated, they believe it provides strong evidence that oxidative damage
to sperm is at the root of much male infertility.
> The anti-oxidant, astaxanthin, is a carotenoid produced by the algae
Haematococcus pluvialis. It has been shown to increase piglet litter size
when given to pigs, and to improve egg production when added to poultry
feed. It is also routinely added to the feed of farmed salmon to enhance the
pinkness of their flesh. But its potential benefits for humans are still
> In a double blind trial, Frank Comhaire of the Center for Medical and
Urological Andrology at Ghent University Hospital and colleagues gave either
astaxanthin or a placebo to 20 infertile men for three months. The men were
all in couples and had been diagnosed infertile for an average of 20 months.
Their female partners had no fertility problems.
> By the end of the study, six of the partners of the 11 men who received
astaxanthin were pregnant. That works out at a monthly pregnancy rate of
23%, says Comhaire, which is the rate expected among fertile couples.
> "This is all within three months of treatment, which is very spectacular
because all these couples have a long-term problem with infertility," he
> By contrast, only one pregnancy occurred in the placebo group.
> The numbers are too small for the results to be statistically significant,
Comhaire warns. But he hopes to be able to repeat the study on a larger
> There is now substantial evidence correlating high levels of reactive
oxygen species (ROS) in semen with oxidative damage to sperm nuclear DNA and
reduced sperm motility. Many researchers believe that an increase in ROS -
perhaps due to lifestyle factors such as smoking, or exposure to
environmental toxins - at least contributes to male infertility.
> In the Belgian study, the researchers measured levels of ROS in the men's
semen and found these were reduced in the astaxanthin group compared with
the controls. Sperm motility was also higher in the astaxanthin group. And
when they took some of the men's sperm and put them in a dish with hamster
oocytes, or egg precursor cells, they found that more of those taken from
the astaxanthin group attached themselves to the oocytes, and penetrated
> "This suggests that the fertilizing potential of the sperm is indeed
increased," said Comhaire.
> Other researchers have shown that anti-oxidants can offer protection
against diseases such as cardiovascular disease and prostate cancer, so he
speculates that if astaxanthin treatment has any side-effects, they will be
> Ashok Agarwal, a urologist at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation in
Cleveland, Ohio said it was too early to draw conclusions from the study.
But he points out that oxidative stress is implicated in around 40% of all
cases of male infertility where the precise cause is unknown, so that
Comhaire's approach appears to be logical.
> "His results do appear to be quite significant, but the sample size is
very, very small," said Agarwal, adding that the few published reports on
the effects of anti-oxidants such as vitamins C and E on infertility are in
general "very conflicting."
> "We are all waiting for a very good clinical study...which can provide
convincing information on some of these anti-oxidant cocktails," he added.
> The findings, which are unpublished, were presented on April 25 at the
fourth world congress on controversies in obstetrics, gynecology and
infertility in Berlin."
> Right... astaxanthin is used as a colour enhancer for fish. I have been
using it along with a high spurulina diet with mu killies anf get reasonably
good yield from them provided other factors are good (temp etc...). The fish
that I get the worst yields from are those that don't eat the flake or
granulate I feed to which I have added the astaxanthin suplement from Brine
Shrimp Direct: Naturose Astaxanthan Powder, that I inherited from a friend
when he went back to Germany (If any germans know of a Lou Duesmann tell him
Tyrone says "hi".)
> So seen similiar results in his fish?
> Tyrone Genade
> Ph: +27-021-558-1753 (h); +27-021-808-5876 (w); +27-084-335-4977 (c)
> P450 Lab, Department of Biochemistry, University of Stellenbosch,
Matieland 7602, South Africa
> "Seek your happiness in the Lord" Psalm 37:4
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