Patanjali Ayurved Managing Director Acharya Balkrishna says that the deadly covid-19 virus can be fought through the Ayurvedic stream of medicine. The ayurvedic vaidya (physician) turned businessman, has recently published a report, in which he says that herbs such as ashwagandha, giloy and tulsi combined could help in fighting the virus. "To combat covid-19 virus with Ayurveda, we have screened close to 1,000 phytochemicals from more than 100 medicinal plants, in-sillico. We looked for their binding affinities to covid-19 essential proteins and host protein interactions. We have discovered that natural phytochemicals in ashwagandha, giloy and tulsi indeed have potentials to combat covid-19 and its pathogenicity," says Balkrishna.
"Our data, for the first time, show that natural phytochemicals could well be the viable options for controlling covid-19 entry into host cells, and Ashwagandha may be the first choice of herbs in these directions to curb the covid-19 infection," he further adds. People with low immunity levels are supposed to be especially susceptible to the covid-19 infection (doctors across the globe are pumping in high doses of vitamin-c to boost immunity) and the Patanjali head honcho says that ashwagandha, giloy and tulsi are extremely effective for fighting weak immunity.
"Newly emerged covid-19 has been shown to engage the host cell ACE2 through its spike protein receptor binding domain (RBD). We have shown that natural phytochemical from Withania somnifera (ashwagandha), have distinct effects on viral RBD and host ACE2 receptor complex. It was found that Withania somnifera compound, Withanone, docked very well in the binding interface of AEC2-RBD complex, and was found to move slightly towards the interface centre on simulation. Withanone significantly decreased electrostatic component of binding free energies of ACE2-RBD complex. Two salt bridges were also identified at the interface; incorporation of Withanone destabilised these salt bridges and decreased their occupancies. We postulate, such an interruption of electrostatic interactions between the RBD and ACE2 would block or weaken covid-19 entry and its subsequent infectivity. It shows that natural phytochemicals could well be the viable options for controlling COVID-19 entry into host cells, and Withania somnifera may be the first choice of herbs in these directions to curb the COVID-19 infectivity," explains Balkrishna.
Similarly, Giloy, says Balkrishna, is widely used for treating diseases such as diabetes, dyspepsia, jaundice, rheumatoid arthritis, pyrexia, inflammations, gout, cardiac debility, excess mucus, urinary disorders and asthma. "The major phytocomponents reported in giloy (Tinospora cordifolia) are tinosporine, tinocordiside, diterpenoid furano lactone, tinosporaside, cordifolide, cordifol, syringin, clerodane furano diterpene, tinosporidine, columbin, heptacosanol, b-sitosterol and tinosporide. Cordifolioside-A and syringin have been reported to possess immunomodulatory activity. Tinosporin, diterpenoid has been claimed specially for the treatment of the targeted viruses including (retroviruses) (HIV-1, HIV-2) all subgroups, HTLV, Herpes simplex Virus (HSV) and other viral diseases. The rich tinocordiside extracts of giloy would be one more viable options for controlling COVID-19 entry into host cells and the general immunomodulatory nature of giloy would enhance innate immunity against COVID-19 infections."
On the other hand, tulsi is used in most Indian homes for its medicinal properties. Its known to have antimicrobial, anti-diarrheal, anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. "We postulate that tulsi phytochemicals may inhibit the corona virus replication and could contain its growth and spread," says Balkrishna.
There is also news of Prince of Wales, Prince Charles, being treated for COVID-19 through Ayurveda and Homeopathy. The Union Ministry of Ayurveda, Yoga & Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy (AYUSH) is known to have sought proposals from practitioners of alternative medicine streams for likely coronavirus treatment remedies.