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Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)

One prime example of quercetin’s multiple effects on viruses has been demonstrated in laboratory studies with HIV, the virus that causes acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Tests indicated that quercetin both blocked infection of healthy cells by the virus and inhibited reproduction of the virus from infected cells.67

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  • Infection. Quercetin blocks the ability of HIV to bind to substances called co-receptors that help the virus to gain entry into a healthy cell (enabling infection). It also inhibits the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines such as tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) that promote HIV activity, while helping to elevate levels of an anti-inflammatory protein that inhibits infection.67
  • Reproduction. Much like conventional drug therapies, lab studies show that quercetin inhibits the HIV-protease enzyme. This enzyme is necessary for an HIV-infected cell to replicate and reproduce more infected cells.10 Additionally, quercetin promotes the expression of anti-inflammatory cytokines that inhibit viral production and the ability of offspring viruses to infect other cells.67
Small proteins excreted from cells.
 
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