IL-17, Inflammatory Diseases and the One Vitamin That May Help

on Oct 25, 2021
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Inflammation in the body.

There are many common diseases where the inflammatory cytokine called Interleukin 17 (IL-17) is activated. In healthy people, IL-17 is typically undetectable when tested for, but inflammatory diseases often show that IL-17 is activated and at elevated levels.

IL-17 does have a purpose in the body as part of the body's defense system, but like other inflammatory mediators, chronic activation is neither good nor healthful.

It is important to remember that IL-17 is fairly high up in the inflammatory cascade, and reducing it can cause a reduction in many of the inflammatory mediators and inflammatory pathways that are below IL-17 in the inflammatory cascade. This is important to be aware of in treating inflammatory diseases where IL-17 is chronically activated. IL-17 is secreted by TH-17 cells along with other inflammatory mediators such as IL-21, IL-22, and IL-23. Some of these other inflammatory mediators that become active are:

  • IL-1b
  • IL-6
  • IL-8
  • TNF- alpha

This review discusses IL-17 at length to give a better idea of what IL-17 does in the body. 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4171672/

Here are two important quotes from the review :

>>>' Recent studies support the notion that deregulated production of IL-17 and IL-21, cytokines produced by Th17 cells, may participate in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases. ' <<<

>>> ' No patients reported any drug-related adverse events; therefore, the safety profile of thiamine administration was excellent at 200 mg daily in this small pilot group. ' <<<

So all of these inflammatory mediators, when combined with IL-17, produce a very robust inflammatory response that seems to help fuel the progression of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.

What Diseases Is IL-17 Activated In?

Here is a partial list of diseases where IL-17 is known to be activated and play a role in the disease process:

  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
  • Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) 
  • Parkinson's Disease (PD)
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
  • Psoriasis
  • Crohn's Disease (CD)
  • Irritable Bowel Disease (IBD)
  • Hyper IgE Syndrome
  • Systemic Sclerosis
  • Behcet's Disease (BD)
  • Diabetes Type 1 & 2 (Possibly involved)
  • Covid-19 
  • Alzheimer's Disease (AD)
  • Wernicke's Encephalopathy (WE)

This list helps define the importance of controlling chronic activation of IL-17.

How to Control Chronic Activation of IL-17

Okay, so now that we know that chronic activation of IL-17 via secretion by TH-17 cells is very likely to cause or worsen multiple health issues, what do we do about it?

The objective should be to limit TH-17 secretion of IL-17, and melatonin is known to do this. Still, we need something that works relatively quickly, is easy to get, has a very good safety profile, is highly potent at limiting TH-17 secretion of IL-17, and will not bankrupt you to try and rein in TH-17 secretion of IL-17.

Given those criteria above, this rules out pharmaceuticals that either potently inhibits or binds IL-17 as they are incredibly costly. One of the newer IL-17 binders, Secukinumab, which is sold under the drug name Cosentyx, costs about $6,000 per month without insurance or discount!

Thiamine Can Limit TH-17 Proinflammatory Response, Potentially Inhibiting IL-17

The following new study from March 2021 below shows for the first time that Thiamine, also known as vitamin B1, is a potent inhibitor (four-fold inhibition) of IL-17 and, of course, the other inflammatory cytokines that are also released right along with IL-17!

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7960760/

Here is a quote from the study:

>>> ' IL-17 concentrations were below the level of detection in the HV (Healthy Volunteers) group but were elevated in the DC (Disease Control) group (Figure 1A). An approximate four-fold decrease was observed in the IL-17 concentration levels (0.09 pg/ml to 0.023 pg/ml) with a treatment dose of 200 mg thiamine daily (Estimated AUC = 204 nmol/L x hour approximately in the 10-h window) by the end of week 3. ' <<<

In yet another study, it is suggested that Thiamine may act to prevent Alzheimer's Disease:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8319660/

Here is a very important quote from the study :

>>> ' Providing a thiamine supplement to elderly persons who still have normal cognition but who have deposition of either amyloid or tau may prevent subsequent cognitive loss and eventual dementia. ' <<<

 In this 2020 study, they discuss how IL-17A is a major contributing factor in neurodegenerative diseases.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7550684/

 Here is a relevant quote from the study :

>>> ' IL-17A is a signature of a key T helper cell population, and evidence suggests a crucial role for IL-17A in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases and neurodegenerative diseases. The function of IL-17A has been proven to be varied as it contributes to pathogenic inflammation and induces innate-like acute immune defenses. Thus, IL-17A is not simply an inflammatory factor. '<<<

Conclusion

Now we know that Thiamine (Vitamin B1) at just 200 mg daily in two divided doses of 100 mg each can cause a very significant reduction of IL-17 by fourfold in just three weeks and you won't have to pay $6,000 a month to do it!

You also won't have to risk getting the side effects associated with Secukinumab/ Cosentyx as outlined here:

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • redness, warmth, or swelling under your skin;
  • cold sores, sores on your genital or anal area;
  • painful skin sores;
  • cough, shortness of breath, cough with red or pink mucus;
  • increased urination, pain, or burning when you urinate;
  • sores or white patches in your mouth or throat (yeast infection or "thrush");
  • diarrhea, stomach pain;
  • fever, chills, sweating;
  • muscle pain; or
  • weight loss.

Common Cosentyx side effects may include:

  • diarrhea; or
  • cold symptoms such as stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat.

This is not a complete list of side effects, and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

Source: https://www.drugs.com/cosentyx.html


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Side Effects Of Thiamine

You can view a list of potential side effects here:

https://www.drugs.com/sfx/thiamine-side-effects.html

It is worth mentioning that Thiamine is likely to offer other health benefits because it is so active in many body functions.

It is also interesting that Thiamine has shown benefit in many of the diseases mentioned above, such as Parkinson's Disease, Diabetes, Alzheimer's Disease, Covid-19, Psoriasis, Wernicke's Encephalopathy, Irritable Bowel Disease, and Arthritis. This tends to confirm the idea that lowering IL-17 toward the values seen in the healthy volunteers (undetectable) is a valuable health endeavor.

How Much Thiamine Did They Use In The Study To Achieve The Lowering Of IL-17 By Four-Fold?

In this study, they used a total of 200 mg per day of Thiamine in divided doses of 100 mg each dose for just three weeks. I want to mention that in this study, they determined how much of a dose to be used based on a dosing model that they created just for this study. They didn't cover this in the study.

Still, since it was not a model that had been previously tested, there is the possibility that using Thiamine for a longer period than 3 weeks may have lowered TH-17 even more or 200 mg/day may not have been the optimal dose for lowering IL-17.


About The Author

Art Solbrig is a researcher who has been reading scientific studies and testing natural remedies for over 30 years searching for useful studies and alternatives that apply positively to human health issues and natural treatments using minerals, vitamins, amino acids, essential oils, herbs, homeopathy, colloidal silver, combination treatments, and other alternatives to improve the quality of life of others by writing about his findings and test results in places like Earth Clinic. He documents and writes about many of his experiences in helping others. Art is a native of sunny California.

Article Updates From Art

1 User Review
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Posted by Art (California) on 11/13/2021 1002 posts
5 out of 5 stars

As an update to this article, I am adding a list of more diseases that have elevated IL-17 levels, suggesting that Thiamine/Vitamin B1, a potent IL-17 inhibitor, may also be a consideration as adjunctive treatment for most, if not all of these diseases. I will include the original list at the bottom from my article of this new list of diseases:

1. Schizophrenia

2. Ankylosing Spondylitis

3. Osteo Arthritis

4. COPD

5. Psoriatic Arthritis

6. Lyme Disease

7. Graves Disease

9. Multiple Myeloma

10. Degenerative Disc Disease

11. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

12. Fibromyalgia

13. Osteoporosis

14. Celiac Disease

15. Depression / Anxiety

Here is the list from the original article of diseases showing elevated IL-17 levels :

  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
  • Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)
  • Parkinson's Disease (PD)
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
  • Psoriasis
  • Crohn's Disease (CD)
  • Irritable Bowel Disease (IBD)
  • Hyper IgE Syndrome
  • Systemic Sclerosis
  • Behcet's Disease (BD)
  • Diabetes Type 1 & 2 (Possibly involved)
  • Covid-19
  • Alzheimer's Disease (AD)
  • Wernicke's Encephalopathy (WE)

Here is a link to the original article that explains how Thiamine is a potent IL-17 inhibitor :

https://www.earthclinic.com/cures/il-17.html

As always, always consult your doctor or medical care health professional to make sure that thiamine at the dose you want to use is safe for you and safe with anything else you may be taking.

Art

Replied by Betty
(CA)
11/13/2021

Thank you for this valuable information.

I have a problem with IL8. I need to have IL17 tested as well. We tested it last year and no problem so thinking now to do it again.

Have you read if low B1 (IL17 level) affects eyesight?

Art
(California)
11/14/2021
1002 posts

IL-17 is elevated in Age Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD) and people with dry eyes, and B vitamins may be helpful, but Folate may be more useful than B1 for ARMD, but the combination B1 plus B-12 may be more useful for dry eyes.

Art

Betty
(CA)
11/14/2021

Thank you! I do take B-12 and B-2 and eat natural folate daily.

I have terrible dry eye. Maybe start with 100mg B-1 would be a good start and talk it over with my ND.

So, is IL-17 a cause for other IL increases (a domino effect?)? A little confused about that.

Art
(California)
11/14/2021
1002 posts

IL-17 can likely act as both cause and effect depending on the situation. As an example, IL-17 is likely an effect of psoriasis, but that production of IL-17 related to psoriasis is likely one of the factors that causes damage that lead to heart problems in people with psoriasis.

A more specific remedy for dry eyes and eye fatigue is the regular use of Maqui Berry Extract as the following two studies suggest :

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25208615/

This second study is a 2019 Randomized, placebo Controlled double blind trial that confirms that Maqui Berry Extract in the form of "MaquiBright" is very effective for dry eyes and eye fatigue which is another common issue in PwP :

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6544612/

Here are some links to several products at the best dose (60 mg/day) found in the studies :

https://www.vitacost.com/life-extension-tear-support-with-maquibright-60-mg-30-vegetarian-capsules-1

https://www.amazon.com/Tear-Support-MaquiBright-Vegetarian-Capsules-Pack-3/dp/B01DJKIBPS/ref=sr_1_5?dchild=1&keywords=maquibright&qid=1602994608&sr=8-5

Based on the study and reviews, it sounds like it takes about 30 days to start seeing benefit and that benefit increases by the 60th day. Make sure it is the "extract version".

Art

Betty
(CA)
11/15/2021

Art, Thank you Thank you!

If I could pick your brain once more about IL's it would be this; What would high IL8 indicate as far as what part of the body does this inflammation marker usually affect? Is there like a bullseye or general area more frequent than others?

Art
(California)
11/16/2021
1002 posts

Hi Betty,

IL-8 is another inflammatory mediator and is sometimes referred to as a cytokine. IL-8 on its own is not hugely inflammatory, but it calls other inflammatory mediators into action to form a potent inflammatory response. That is normal activity, but problems arise when this inflammatory response becomes chronic and turns into an anti health self feeding cycle.

IL-8 is lower in the inflammatory cascade than IL-17 and reducing IL-17 can potentially reduce IL-8 and the inflammatory mediators which IL-8 has called into action.

IL-8 can be present in the blood, cerebrospinal fluid, synovial fluid and tissues depending on the disease. In some diseases, it is elevated in the blood. In other diseases, it can be elevated in the cerebrospinal fluid, synovial fluid or tissues.

In psoriasis, it is elevated in the tissues of skin lesions. In RA it is elevated in the synovial fluid. In Parkinson's disease it is lower in the serum, but higher in the cerebrospinal fluid. In liver disease, it is elevated in the serum. ALS patients have elevated IL-8 in the brain tissues making it more difficult to try and lower IL-8 levels as any treatment will have to have the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB), as well as be able to reduce IL-8 without causing further neuroinflammation. There are not a lot of natural supplements that have this dual capability, but there are at least 10. As you can see, IL-8 can be disease-specific in regards to where it is activated in the body.

So to answer your question, IL-8 can become activated in many areas of the body depending on the disease in question. It is not limited to a specific area or areas of the body.

Art

Betty
(CA)
11/17/2021

Ah, thank you for the detailed explanation, Art. I will be having an IL17 conversation with my ND for sure.

I take several things for IL8 and knocked it down to 23. But lately, it has crept back up to over 100+ and we don't know why just yet.

My scans show mild inflammation at the resection site. Was told it can take a long time to heal.

Art
(California)
11/17/2021
1002 posts

Betty,

Sometimes supplements that initially work for a specific purpose in the body, may not be as effective over time so in your case, IL-8 knockdown is your objective and sometimes rotating IL-8 inhibitors can help prevent the body from adapting to just one or two or three IL-8 inhibiting supplements. Here is a partial list of some common supplements that are known to inhibit IL-8 and cross the blood brain barrier while having very good safety profiles;

1. Melatonin

2. Magnesium >taurate>l-threonate>glycinate>aspartate

3. Vitamin D

4. Pine Bark Extract

5. Grape Seed Extract

6. Taurine

7. Thiamine

8. Probiotics

9. Selenium

10. Curcumin w/Bioperine as both are effective IL-8 inhibitors and both cross the BBB. Bioperine also increases absorption of curcumin.

Art

Betty
(CA)
11/18/2021

Wow! Thank you very much for your insight. Sincerely.

Replied by Elsa G.
(California)
11/20/2021

Hi Art,

Please can you tell me how to get better with Rheumatoid Arthritis, I am in a lot of inflammation and pain and very physical damage.

Thank you.

Elsa

Art
(California)
11/20/2021
1002 posts

Hi Elsa G,

The most effective thing I have seen for arthritis is Borax and I have seen it work very well for my psoriatic arthritis for over 13 years now as well as thousands of reports across the web for many other forms including RA and OA. It can take up to 3 to 4 months to see maximum benefit in long standing arthritis, but people have reported seeing some improvement within the first two weeks of starting borax. The protocol was founded by Dr. Rex Newnham in the 70's and further promoted by Ted from Bangkok, right here on Earth Clinic!

Ted's protocol calls for a man to take one quart of water with 1/4th of a teaspoon of borax in it per day for four days of the week. I drink one of these bottles throughout the day on Monday until finished and repeat the process on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday each day This gives a man a total of 1 level US measuring teaspoon of borax per week. I then take Friday, Saturday and Sunday off to allow any excess borax to be eliminated.

Women take exactly half of the dose for men. So women use 1/8th teaspoon of borax in a quart of water to be consumed throughout the day and follow the same pattern of one quart of borax water each day for four days of the week followed by 3 days of no borax water.

This is the regimen that Ted recommended on EC.

WARNING :

Some people are not able to tolerate borax and have bad reactions to it such as stomach upset or hives. So you have to pay attention when first starting out and if you have bad reactions to borax, you may not be able to take it. In case you are not able to tolerate borax, you can still try using a boron type of supplement. If that is not effective or you don't tolerate boron, there are still many other arthritis remedies ( over 95 remedies) to consider here on Earth clinic here:

https://www.earthclinic.com/cures/arthritis.html

Keep in mind that borax does not start relieving pain right away and if your pain is bad, you may need a topical pain reliever at least temporarily until the borax starts to work. If that is the case, I have written about some good topical pain relievers which you might find useful here:

https://www.earthclinic.com/cures/pain-relief-remedies-art-solbrig.html

Good luck and please update us on how you are doing!

Art


Benfotiamine B1

Posted by Uncertain (LA.) on 10/26/2021

Do you recommend the BENFOTIAMINE form of B1?

Thank you, Art. You are the best.

Replied by Art
(California)
10/26/2021
1002 posts

Hello Uncertain,

I do not recommend Benfotiamine for the specific purpose of lowering IL-17 because I have not seen literature saying that it specifically lowers IL-17. It does have similar antiinflammatory effects as thiamine and it may lower IL-17, but I have not seen any data to confirm that.

Benfotiamine is a derivative of thiamine but they have one big difference between them, Benfotiamine is fat soluble while thiamine hydrochloride and thiamine mononitrate, the two commonest forms of thiamine are both water soluble and as such, can be eliminated from the body fairly quickly in the urine. Benfotiamine, being fat soluble can build up in fat tissue when taken at higher dosing for long term. Generally, Benfotiamine is considered to be useful for diabetes, but is best used under a doctor's supervision and monitoring since diabetes is a serious condition that can have very serious health consequences if not treated correctly.

Art

Peter from Chicago
(Chicago)
10/27/2021

Art,

Can I take the daily 200 mg as preventive medicine?

Art
(California)
10/27/2021
1002 posts

Hi Peter,

I am not clear on what you are asking, as healthy people have IL-17 levels that are undetectable and would not necessarily need extra thiamine, whereas people who have the diseases and health issues listed as well as other diseases not listed, have elevated levels of the inflammatory IL-17 in which case you would want to possibly try to replicate the study dosing schedule to try and lower IL-17 significantly. If you are referring specifically to Benfotiamine, which I was not referring to, because of its ability to store in fat, then that is a different matter. If that is what you meant regarding Benfotiamine, are you speaking of using it as a preventative of diabetes? If you can be more specific, I can try and give a better answer. I was initially discussing thiamine as thiamine HCL and thiamine mononitrate for the purpose of lowering elevated levels of IL-17. Both of these forms are water soluble and pass through the system fairly quickly and have good safety profiles at the dosage used in the study.

Art

Dorit
(Isarel)
11/08/2021

Hi Art.

Thank you for the great info. Can't find any thiamine HCl only. 100mg. Can a multi b complex work? Thanks.

peter
(chicago)
10/27/2021

Art,

Sorry typo above.

I meant thiamine 200 mg (B 1) for preventive.

Art
(California)
10/29/2021
1002 posts

Peter,

Okay, now I understand what you meant. If you do not have a condition of low B1 or a health issue that has shown elevated levels of TH-17/IL-17, then just supplementing at the daily allowance level should be all that is needed because healthy people generally have undetectable levels of IL-17.

Art

Peter
(from chicago)
10/30/2021

Thanks, Art.

Art
(California)
11/08/2021
1002 posts

Hi Dorit,

Many of these listed Amazon suppliers say they ship to Israel :

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=thiamine+hydrochloride+hcl+sublingual&ref=nb_sb_noss

Art


Thiamine for Inflammation

2 User Reviews
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Posted by Lauren (Toronto, Ontario) on 10/26/2021
5 out of 5 stars

Hi Art,

Thank you for the interesting/informative article on thiamine for IL-17 (inflammation).

Will thiamine worsen candida overgrowth? Thiamine in the B vitamin family is yeast based? I'm also sensitive to yeast.

Thank you, Lauren

Replied by Jolie
(Kansas City, KS)
10/26/2021
5 out of 5 stars

I also would like to know thiamine's affect on candida. Thank you!

Art
(California)
10/26/2021
1002 posts

Hi Jolie,

Please see my reply to Lauren.

Art

Fran
(UK)
10/28/2021
6 posts

Hi Art,

Is there a reason why 'Dystonia' is not mentioned in the trials?

Replied by Art
(California)
10/26/2021
1002 posts

Hi Lauren,

Candida causes thiamine deficiency which is bad for the the body and brain in particular as thiamine is needed to control neuroinflammation and eventual mitochondria and neuronal damage in the brain. This could potentially increase a person's chances of getting neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease or Wernicke's Encephalopathy. The body definitely has need for thiamine as it produces it naturally in a healthy gut microbiome, but not so much when gut dysbiosis is in play as seen in cases of Candida Albicans overgrowth.

Because Candida causes this thiamine deficiency, it is possible that candida uses thiamine as part of its survival mechanism.

Given the importance of thiamine in humans, it may be better to first knock down the Candida Albicans (CA) overgrowth back to normal body levels, possibly by using Bill Thompson's protocol for that specific purpose or other ideas suggested here on EC for that specific purpose. His protocol is available through EC. Once you have the CA back to normal levels, then you can add thiamine in to protect the brain and body and lower inflammatory levels back toward normal. It is highly unhealthful to live with CA overgrowth in the short and especially in the long term!

Keep in mind that one of the studies I linked to said this:

>>> ' Providing a thiamine supplement to elderly persons who still have normal cognition but who have deposition of either amyloid or tau may prevent subsequent cognitive loss and eventual dementia. ' <<<

............................................................

That quote is a definite clue as to the great importance of thiamine in people.

Art

Art
(California)
10/29/2021
1002 posts

Fran,

I'm not sure what trials you are referring to?

If you are referring to the partial list of diseases or health issues that have shown to have elevated IL-17 as a factor, the data for IL-17 as it might relate to Dystonia is nil.

Art