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Several years ago, a study group in Gießen [Germany] showed in a small study a positive effect of Crataegutt® [crataegus] on the chloride channel in CF patients.

What is the current status? Formely, I was a participant of the study and maybe I would like to repeat the tests, i.e. take one tablet of 450mg crataegus twice a day in order to find out if the effects mentioned in the study (e.g. weight gain, better stool consistency) can be observed in my case.

Is this procedure acceptable? I am doing very well, almost healthy lung function, Elastase at 250, „normal life“.

Many thanks.


The following answer was provided by Dr. Lutz Nährlich of the University Hospital Gießen-Marburg [Germany] by Email:

“ (…) I would like to send you the answer of Prof. Lindemann [who initiated the study] regarding your request. (…)

The Gießen study group has no doubts about the general effect of flavonoids. In addition to former studies an improvement of the conductivity of chloride ions was checked again in 27 adult CF patients. For easier verification, only the results of nasal potential difference measurements were analyzed. We hope that the dissertation about this will be finished this year [2013].

After previous therapy with an orally administered flavonoid compound for at least three months, 79% of 13 CF patients with the deltaF508 or G551D mutations, and 64,3% of patients with other mutations, responded to the asthma medication tiotropium. These results confirmed the results of a previous test in which the asthma medication salbutamol - with flavonoid intake – was successfully used as a stimulator for chloride ion permeability [German title 'Flavonoide und Chloridpermeabilität', ].

The reason why the effect of flavonoids is not completely satisfying yet could be that they were not sufficiently resorbed by a few patients after oral application. This may potentially be due to inflammation processes in the mucous membrane of the small intestine, which make flavonoid resorption difficult.

There was not doubt, however, about a significant increase in chloride ion permeability.
Since tolerance of flavonoids is good (diarrhea is only reported if the dosage is too high), we believe that adult patients who are interested in taking a preparation such as Crataegutt® (crataegus) could take one tablet of 450mg twice a day without concern. This could bridge the time until the new substances for activation of the chloride ion channel that are currently being developed will become accessible for the general public. It is not clear, however, whether health insurances will cover the costs.” [end of the e-mail of Dr. Lutz Nährlich]

Please discuss it with your CF team if you think about an intake of Crataegus.

Best regards,
Annette Pfalz for ECORN-CF