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The right cup of tea? UPASI research institue explores collaboration with ICMR to combat coronavirus

C Shreedharan, chairman, UPASI Tea Committee, said researchers from Taiwan and China have found in a laboratory study that SARS Cov-2 could be inhibited by compounds that are abundant in teas.

Published: 17th April 2020 09:20 PM  |   Last Updated: 17th April 2020 09:20 PM   |  A+A-

For representational purposes (Photo | Pixabay)

By Express News Service

KOCHI: UPASI Tea Research Institute is exploring the possibility of investigating the antiviral property of Theaflavins-3, a compound abundantly found in black tea and catechins from green tea for the control of Coronavirus in collaboration with Tea Board of India through Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR).

C Shreedharan, chairman, UPASI Tea Committee, said researchers from Taiwan and China have found in a laboratory study that SARS Cov-2 could be inhibited by compounds that are abundant in teas.

Numerous black tea polyphenols especially those of Theaflavins-1, Theaflavins-2 and Theaflavins-3 were found to inhibit the SARS Cov-2 replication.

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"In black tea, Theaflavins-3 was the most abundant (1.05 per cent). These results suggest that Theaflavins might be good starting point for the design of more active inhibitors for SARS-CoV-2 and these compounds are abundant in the extract of black tea produced from the seedling populations belonging to Camellia L SP as well as the cultivars developed by the UPASI Tea Research Institute," he said, in a release here.

Shreedharan said researchers from Taiwan and China have found that in a laboratory study SARS Cov-2 could be inhibited by compounds that are abundant in teas.

Numerous black tea polyphenols especially those of Theaflavins-1, Theaflavins-2 and Theaflavins-3 were found to inhibit the SARS Cov-2 replication.

In black tea, Theaflavins-3 was the most abundant (1.05 per cent). These results suggest that Theaflavins might be good starting point for the design of more active inhibitors for SARS-CoV-2 and these compounds are abundant in the extract of black tea produced from the seedling populations belonging to Camellia L SP as well as the cultivars developed by the UPASI Tea Research Institute, the release said.

Drinking three to four cups of black tea a day is associated with lower risk of myocardial infarction and reduced risk of stroke, said the release.

It has also been proved that drinking black tea, which has Theaflavins content, three times a day had a positive impact on reducing the degree of growth of cancerous cells including breast cancer, skin cancer and prostrate cancer.

"Black tea extract also has beneficial effect in preventing / reducing cigarette smoke induced cancer in lungs," he said, in a statement.

"The amino acid L - Theanine, found almost exclusively in the tea plant, actively alters the attention of the brain. It also helps the body’s immune system in response to the infection of several diseases. There are evidences to show that black tea is associated with protective role against cancer, diabetics, cardiovascular diseases, prevention of infections besides detoxifying, stress relief and anti-inflammatory properties," Shreedharan said.

World over many researchers have proved drinking tea on a regular basis has immense health benefits. The chemical constituents of tea vary with the geographical location, cultivation practices, cultivars and processing.

Green tea contain largely polyphenols also known as catechins.

"Whereas black tea contains Theaflavins and Thearubigins, Phenolic acids and Theanine besides Caffeine. Both Catechins and Theaflavins are the compounds that are reported to be responsible for the beneficial effects of tea consumption," the release said.



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