From: Lynne Schuler
Sent: Tuesday, April 03, 2001 8:38 PM
To: Dr. Arpad Pusztai
Subject: Re: Lectins
Dear Dr. Pusztai,
I was thrilled to get your reply. Thank you so much for taking the time to answer. I hope you are feeling better. Moreover, your kind answer was not too late- the hearing will not be until April 5.
I am well acquainted with your book "Handbook of Plant Lectins", as my friend, Cheryl Owen, has used it as a basis for a web page on lectins which she is developing. I have attached this webpage and hope that you will take a few minutes to look at it. Of course, your name is mentioned more than once in the references! I know she would love to hear any comments you have or suggestions for improvement.
I was wondering if you had a few minutes if you could answer a few more questions for your fans (Cheryl and me):
- What does a noted lectinologist eat? Does his knowledge of lectins influence his choice in foods?
One of Cheryl's favorite dishes is 'Lecso', a delicious Hungarian concoction of peppers, onions and tomato, cooked down into a thick sauce and served over things like schnitzel, whether made from veal, turkey cutlets, or chicken. Do you eat things like this? Do you place this on the "safe to eat" range?
- In your book (‘Handbook of Lectins"), you have an entry for GNA (I am sure you are quite familiar with this particular lectin ;-D):
Galanthus nivalis lectin (GNA) agglutinates rabbit but not human erythrocytes. The bulbs have a high concentration of the lectin. But it is present throughout the plant. The lectin is specific for mannose (one of those OTHER sugars on all our cells). GNA shows anti-insect activity -they fed it to several varieties of insect and it had 'anti-metabolic' effects on them. GNA prevents E. coli overgrowth in the rat intestine. GNA administered orally is non-toxic for rats.
If mannose is a sugar in all our cells, why doesn’t it agglutinate human erythrocytes?
- In your research article: Dietary lectins are metabolic signals for the gut and modulate immune and hormone functions, you say:
Most lectins in our diet are resistant to breakdown during gut passage and are bound and endocytosed by epithelial cells. These lectins are powerful exogenous growth factors for the small intestine, can induce dramatic shifts in its bacterial flora, and interfere with its hormone secretion. In addition, lectins, which are transported across the gut wall into the systemic circulation, can modulate the body's hormone balance, metabolism, and health. Although these physiological effects are mediated or reinforced by immune responses, they are primarily the result of the specific chemical reactivity of lectins with cell surface receptors of the gut.
Do you think we are close to mapping the human gut so that we can transfer the knowledge we have about lectins to humans?
- In ER4YT, it says:
Lectins found in the diet can cause a variety of problems, especially if they are specific to a particular blood type. For the most part our immune systems protect us from lectins. Ninety-five percent of the lectins we absorb from our typical diets are sloughed off by the body. But at least 5 percent of the lectins we eat are filtered into the bloodstream, where they react with and destroy red and white blood cells. The actions of lectins in the digestive tract can be even more powerful. There they often create a violent inflammation of the sensitive mucous of the intestines, and this agglutinative action may mimic food allergies. Even a minute quantity of a lectin is capable of agglutinating a huge number of cells if the particular blood type is reactive.
In ER4YT, one of the ways that Dr. D'Adamo tested for "bad" lectins was by checking to see if a food agglutinated that particular blood type. The idea being partly that these blood type antigens would also be in the digestive system or that the lectin might get paste the digestive system, into the bloodstream and agglutinate the blood. ER4YT pg.30:
I know because the effects of lectins on different blood types are not just a theory. They're based on science. I've tested virtually all common foods for blood type reactions, using both clinical and laboratory methods. I can purchase isolated lectins from foods such as peanuts, lentils, meat, or wheat from chemical laboraratories, and the results are visible under the microscope. I can see them agglutinating cells in the affected blood type.
Does the fact that an isolated lectin agglutinates blood under a microscope have any relation to what will happen in your body?
- This is also in ER4YT:
There is also a more direct scientific barometer that can be used to measure the presence of lectins in your system. The barometer is a simple urine test called the Indican Scale. The Indican Scale measures a factor called bowel putrefaction. When the liver and intestines don't properly metabolize proteins, they produce toxics by-products called indols. The level of these toxic by-products is shown on the Indican Scale.
Any scientific basis for this?
Thank you so much for your time.
Lynne Schuler and Cheryl Owen