Is beer good for you? Study finds anti-virus powers

December 6, 2012

Consuming large quantities of a key ingredient in beer can protect against winter sniffles and even some serious illnesses in small children, a Japanese brewery said citing a scientific study.

A in hops, the plant brewers use to give beer its , provides an effective guard against a virus that can cause severe forms of pneumonia and in youngsters, Sapporo Breweries said Wednesday.

In research with scientists at Sapporo Medical University, the compound—humulone—was found to be effective in curbing the respiratory syncytial (RS) virus, said the company, which funded the study.

"The RS virus can cause serious pneumonia and for infants and toddlers, but no vaccination is available at the moment to contain it," said Jun Fuchimoto, a researcher from the company.

The virus tends to spread in winter and can also cause cold-like symptoms in adults.

Fuchimoto said such small quantities of humulone were present in beer that someone would have to drink around 30 cans, each of 350 millilitres (12 oz), for it to have any virus-fighting effect.

"We are now studying the feasibility of applying humulone to food or non-alcoholic products," he said. "The challenge really is that the bitter taste is going to be difficult for children."

The research also found that humulone alleviated inflammation caused by infection from the virus, the brewery said.

Explore further: Keeping beer fresh longer

Related Stories

Keeping beer fresh longer

April 13, 2011
Researchers are reporting discovery of a scientific basis for extending the shelf life of beer so that it stays fresh and tastes good longer. For the first time, they identified the main substances that cause the bitter, ...

RSV study shows potential for vaccine strategies to protect babies

November 15, 2012
(Medical Xpress)—Research by the University of Warwick indicates that vaccinating families could protect young babies against a common winter virus which can be fatal for infants under six months.

Saudi Arabia confirms 2nd case of SARS-like virus

November 5, 2012
(AP)—Saudi Arabia's Health Ministry has confirmed that a second person in the kingdom has contracted a new respiratory virus related to SARS, bringing to three the number of those sickened by it in the Gulf region in recent ...

Common virus can lead to life-threatening conditions in children

March 19, 2012
(Medical Xpress) -- Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) is a common virus that infects the lungs and breathing passage ways. Though it may only produce minor cold symptoms in adults, it can lead to serious illness in young ...

Recommended for you

Google searches can be used to track dengue in underdeveloped countries

July 20, 2017
An analytical tool that combines Google search data with government-provided clinical data can quickly and accurately track dengue fever in less-developed countries, according to new research published in PLOS Computational ...

MRSA emerged years before methicillin was even discovered

July 19, 2017
Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) emerged long before the introduction of the antibiotic methicillin into clinical practice, according to a study published in the open access journal Genome Biology. It was ...

New test distinguishes Zika from similar viral infections

July 18, 2017
A new test is the best-to-date in differentiating Zika virus infections from infections caused by similar viruses. The antibody-based assay, developed by researchers at UC Berkeley and Humabs BioMed, a private biotechnology ...

'Superbugs' study reveals complex picture of E. coli bloodstream infections

July 18, 2017
The first large-scale genetic study of Escherichia coli (E. coli) cultured from patients with bloodstream infections in England showed that drug resistant 'superbugs' are not always out-competing other strains. Research by ...

Ebola virus can persist in monkeys that survived disease, even after symptoms disappear

July 17, 2017
Ebola virus infection can be detected in rhesus monkeys that survive the disease and no longer show symptoms, according to research published by Army scientists in today's online edition of the journal Nature Microbiology. ...

Mountain gorillas have herpes virus similar to that found in humans

July 13, 2017
Scientists from the University of California, Davis, have detected a herpes virus in wild mountain gorillas that is very similar to the Epstein-Barr virus in humans, according to a study published today in the journal Scientific ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.