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Medical Benefits of Honeybee Products

Call for Papers

Ever since man has been keeping honeybees, the use of hive products in medicine has been important. Honeybee products, such as honey, bee pollen, propolis, Royal jelly, beeswax, and bee venom, have long been used in traditional medicine. The exact origins of apitherapy can be traced back to ancient Egypt, Greece, and China. Healing properties of honey and other bee products are found in many religious texts including the Veda, Bible, and Quran. In the Old Testament, the land of Israel was often referred to as the “land flowing of milk and honey.” The Romans used honey to heal their wounds after battles.

Ethnomedicine, a study of the traditional medicine practiced by various ethnic groups, is a complex multidisciplinary system. It applies the methods of ethnobotany and medical anthropology and constitutes the use of plants and the natural environment. Since ancient times animal products have constituted part of the inventory of medicinal substances used in various cultures. Despite technological developments, bee products along with herbal drugs still occupy a preferential place in a majority of the population in the Third World and terminal patients in the west. Many valuable drugs of today came into use through the study of indigenous remedies. Although ethnomedicine has been the source of healing for people for millennia, it is in the last decade that research interests in ethnomedicine and ethnopharmacy have increased tremendously.

Bee products in their raw form along with crude extracts and purified compounds from them have been shown to exhibit antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidative, radio-protective, and tissue-regenerating activities. Some recent studies have revealed that natural honeybee products exhibit immune-modulating properties, inhibit tumor cell growth and metastasis, and induce apoptosis of cancer cells. These bioactive natural products may help manage, among others, cancer, autoimmune diseases, Alzheimer’s, Lyme disease, and antibiotic-resistant infections. With the increasing threat of antibiotic-resistant infections and drug over-use, the return to honey bee products as a natural, multipurpose healing therapy makes all the sense in the world.

Studies on the composition of honeybee products and their biological and pharmacological properties and mechanisms of action are welcome. We are especially interested in articles on the history of the research on honeybee products. We invite investigators to contribute original research and review articles that will explore aspects of the biological activity of a wide range of honeybee products and their possible applications.

Potential topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • The history of bee products
  • Ethnomedical and ethnopharmacological issues of bee products
  • Bee products in complementary and alternative medicine
  • Studies on potential biological effects of bee products ranging from antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antidiabetic, dermatoprotective, antiallergic, and immunomodulatory to anticancer activities using in vitro and in vivo experimental models
  • Standardization and registration of bee product preparations
  • Clinical trials/reports on the efficacy of bee products for the prevention/treatment of disease
  • Bee products in modern medicine
  • Safety evaluation of known bee products
  • Biological potential of bee products for application in medicine

Authors can submit their manuscripts through the Manuscript Tracking System at

Manuscript DueFriday, 21 October 2016
First Round of ReviewsFriday, 13 January 2017
Publication DateFriday, 10 March 2017

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