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Indonesian researcher finds herbal formula to curb bird flu
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Indonesian researcher finds herbal formula to curb bird flu

Indonesian researcher finds herbal formula to curb bird flu 2005-09-15 20:48:57

    JAKARTA, Sept. 15 (Xinhuanet) -- An Indonesian researcher has found a herbal formula to ward off bird flu virus on chicken, saying that there is a possibility of using the formula to other poultry and human.

    Sumardi, 42, a researcher at the Food Technology School of Semarang's Soegipapranata Catholic University, accidentally found the formula in July.

    In a telephone interview with Xinhua from the capital of Central Java Province of Semarang on Thursday, Sumardi said, the formula basically comprised four traditional medicinal plants: Java chili powder (piper retrofactum), white turmeric extract (curcuma xanthorriza), temu ireng extract (curcuma aeruginosa) and powder of fragrant wild ginger (zingiber aromaticum).

    Sumardi mixed these four materials with honey bees, cane sugar,and some water.

    Among the four basic materials, zingiber aromaticum had the strongest effect to avoid the attack of the lethal virus, he said.

    "The zingiber aromaticum has ion of OH minus and OH plus that can easily react. It is strongly predicted that the ion curbs the growth of H5N1 virus," he added.

    The researcher cited that in a normal condition, one virus of H5N1 could develop into four within two seconds.

    "So the scores of the bird flu virus in chickens being attacked will not increase, and the number of virus can be declined as the virus has life cycle," he said, "So the chickens can survive, despite they grow slower."

    These chickens are safe to be consumed as long as they are cooked with at least 80 degree Celsius, he said.

    Sumardi said, in July he tried this formula with 400 chicks, which were places close to carcasses of chicken that had died of the H5N1 virus, somewhere in East Java province.

    He divided these chicks into four groups of 100 each. The first group was given no medicine at all. The second group was given a low dose of 10 percent, the third group of 20 percent and the fourth 30 percent.

    "On the fourth day, all the chicks treated with the formula with various doses are survive, but those without having the treatment all died," said Sumardi.

    But, he said that if the formula treated to the poultry in too high doses it could decline chickens' desire to eat.

    Regarding to using the formula for other poultry such as goat, pig, and cow, he said, "I believe so, it needs an examination."

    He said that the culling method recommended in Indonesia was developed from the experience of developing countries, where poultry racing is very concentrated in almost factory-type situation. But in Indonesia there are millions of chickens live in backyards.


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