Australian Honeybee As Anti-bacterial Treatment
A research group that is based in Brisbane has discovered that honey sourced from a native myrtle tree in Australia have a powerful anti-bacterial properties. They found out that the honey is having a very high level of Methylglyoxal (MGO) an anti-bacterial compound. According to Los Altos honey bees, it also performs better than all other medicinal honeys that are in the market, including the Manuka honeys.
The honey that was cultivated in an undisclosed place in northern NSW and in southeast Queensland is made by bees that are feeding on Leptospermum polygalifolium or known as lemon-scented tea tree of jelly bush.
The 100 jelly bush honeys that come from a range of areas were tested by Queensland researchers and were found out that some contains 1750mg/kg of “methylglyoxal” an anti-bacterial compound. This is the highest concentration that was found in this kind of honey, higher than Manuka honey found in New Zealand.
Long since ancient times, honey has been known to have antimicrobial properties. This has been used as remedy for wounds during that time. Due to the discovery of the potency of manuka and jelly bush honeys, interest in the honey’s medicinal use has resurfaced in the recent years.
The latest study that was carried out by the Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation (QAAFI), University of Queensland and two medicinal honey companies, shows that jelly bush grows along east coast starting from southern NSW to Cape York. But it is not known why there are only certain trees that lead to very high methylglyoxal levels in honey.
The researchers plan to have a further study to look for the methylglyoxal mechanism of action and also the enzymes and other antimicrobial phytochemicals in the honey.
The manuka and jelly bush honeys are now being used in ointments and dressings. But a biochemist from the University of Waikato in New Zealand have argued that the synergy that increase the methylglyoxal activity can only be found in some types of manuka honey. In Manuka honey, it has its own methylglyoxal that can kill human cells and also bacterial cells. But there is something in manuka honey that can counteract this toxicity. And regarding the Queensland honey, it is not yet proven if that type of honey has its own protective component to overcome the toxicity of the methylglyoxal that is very high level. And thus requires further studies before it can be assumed to be safe for use for infected tissues.