Biological compounds found in seaweeds are frequently used in various industrial applications. However, few pharmacological studies on sea moss are conducted to identify new medications or discover new structures for producing new therapeutics for human diseases such as cancer and infectious disorders. Here are some pharmaceutical applications of sea moss.
- Sea moss as Anticoagulant agents
Sea mosses such as Chlorophyta and Fucales anticoagulant effect just like heparin due to in vitro suppression of factors Xa and IIa mediated by antithrombin and heparin cofactor II. Fucoidans are present in some brown sea moss and are used as a potential substitute for heparin.
- Sea moss as Antiviral agents
Polysaccharides found in seaweeds can help scientists produce potent antivirals. For example, SARS-CoV-2 is inhibited in vitro by polysaccharides derived from sea moss Saccharina japonica. Sulfated galactan (FG) isolated from sea moss green alga primarily consisted of D-galactose with pyruvic acid (12.3 %) and sulphate (11.0 %). FG significantly reduced viral replication and reproduction. The mechanism of action of FG was hypothesised to interfere with the early steps of virus adsorption to and penetration into host cells. Furthermore, FG also lowered virus infection rates directly.
- Sea moss as antimicrobials agents
Antimicrobial properties of various algae species have been investigated and published, revealing a broad range of activity against bacteria and fungi. Carrageenans showed significant effects against bacteria such as Salmonella enteritidis, Salmonella typhimurium, Vibrio mimicus, Escherichia coli, etc. They significantly reduced the growth of all bacterial strains.
- Sea moss as antitumor agents
Seaweeds and several seaweed-derived chemicals have been proven to have anti-cancer properties through various mechanisms, including the reduction of cancer cell growth, metastasis invasiveness, and the induction of apoptosis in cancer cells. Uncontrolled free radicals can harm cells, leading them to increase in potentially harmful ways – damaged cells might even turn malignant. You can be able to reduce risk of certain cancers by consuming seaweeds.
- Sea moss as an antioxidant agent
Sea moss is a rich source of iron and antioxidants, which help the immune system. In addition, like other sea vegetables, sea moss is a natural source of iodine, a vitamin essential for thyroid function. Red seaweeds, such as sea moss, are also high in antioxidants, which are molecules that protect your cells from disease-causing oxidative damage and detoxify your liver and body from waste, poisons, and other toxins.
Red algal agar is frequently utilised in biomedicine as a suspension component in drug solutions and anticoagulant agents and in pill form as a laxative. The red algae Gracilaria edulis is well-known worldwide for its pharmacological qualities, such as anti-diabetic, antioxidant, antibacterial, anticoagulant, anti-inflammatory, and antiproliferative.
Seaweeds have many industrial applications nowadays. Aside from being a source of novel, beneficial, and natural products, sea moss has larger-scale benefits as aquaculture is an environmentally friendly process that favours the production of biomass and protein-rich compounds. So, get your daily dosage of vitamins and minerals from this superfood available at Herbal Vineyards.
Pereira, L. (2018). Biological and therapeutic properties of the seaweed polysaccharides. International Biology Review, 2(2). https://doi.org/10.18103/IBR.V2I2.1762
Pereira, L. (2018). Antiviral Activity of Seaweeds and their Extracts. Therapeutic and Nutritional Uses of Algae, 175–211. https://doi.org/10.1201/9781315152844-5/ANTIVIRAL-ACTIVITY-SEAWEEDS-EXTRACTS-LEONEL-PEREIRA
Moussavou, G., Kwak, D. H., Obiang-Obonou, B. W., Maranguy, C. A. O., Dinzouna-Boutamba, S. D., Lee, D. H., Pissibanganga, O. G. M. (2014). Anticancer Effects of Different Seaweeds on Human Colon and Breast Cancers. Marine Drugs, 12(9), 4898. https://doi.org/10.3390/MD12094898