What is Betulinic Acid? A Brief Overview of This Versatile CompoundBetulinic acid (Betulin acid) is a naturally occurring bioactive compound found in many plants, but most commonly in the bark of the white birch tree. Over the last 15-or-so years, there’s been a growing interest in Betulinic acid, with researchers finding a wide range of positive applications for this versatile substance.
A wide range of benefits…Betulinic acid has a wide range of benefits; including skin disease treatment and overall recovery, as well as the prevention of skin aging. Research also shows improved metabolic responses from the body – lowered cholesterol, higher insulin sensitivity and general dietary benefits that may promote healthy body weight regulation.
Promising anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory propertiesApart from direct benefits, betulinic acid is also widely studied as an anticancer agent. Research has also exhibited its other biological activities – antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory and many others.
Betulinic acid supplements in cosmeticsIt has been proven that betulinic acid can reduce inflammation and immunostimulatory responses, making it a useful ingredient in cosmetic products. Exhibiting antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal effects, betulinic acid derivatives are also useful for the treatment and prevention of problems caused by microorganisms. In cases of psoriasis and dermatitis, the admission of betulinic acid can relieve debilitating symptoms and improve overall healing.
Betulinic acid for diabetes and cardiovascular diseaseIn lab animal tests, betulinic acid showed positive dietary effects: Oral admission of betulinic acid was able to significantly reverse the weight gain caused by high-fructose diets. Results showed that levels of insulin, nectin and adiponectin were close to those before admission of a high sugar diet. In addition, lipid parameters returned to normal, showing promising potential for the prevention of atherosclerosis, cardiac events and cardiovascular diseases. Betulinic acid also exhibited positive effects in lab animals with induced type-2 diabetes, proving its hypoglycemic effects (the reduction of blood sugar).
Betulinic acid’s anticancer and antiviral activityThe first reports of betulinic acid’s anticancer activity date back to 1995, where they demonstrated positive results against human melanoma cells. The mechanism of anti-tumor activity of betulinic acid is fairly well studied, and is believed to proceed via three possible pathways:
- Anti-proliferative activity inhibiting topoisomerases I and II in tumor cells.
- Inducing mitochondrial apoptosis pathways in cancer cells.
- Inhibiting angiogenesis in tumor cells.
Synergistic enhancement of anti-cancer drugsThere are several studies showing exceptional activity from betulinic acid in vitro against several types of cancer cell lines. Betulinic acid clinical trials have been conducted where the compound has been used as an additive to other anticancer drugs, inducing many of the effects described previously, as well as creating synergetic effects that enhanced the overall effectiveness of the main drug.
Betulinic acid in HIV treatmentIn studies for anti-HIV drugs, the bioactive extracts derived from Syzygium claviflorum, the active compound was indeed found to be betulinic acid. Although betulinic acid showed activity against HIV, further studies in this field were carried out with semi-synthetic derivatives of betulinic acid, such as Bevirimat.
Synthetic Betulinic AcidBetulinic acid is also used as a precursor for new semi-synthetic derivative synthesis. With a few chemical modifications, betulinic acid can be transformed into “click-ready” (for CuAAC) substrates for easy and fast active compound library diversification. Such combinations allow for the creation of hybrid systems – compounds where two or more bioactive motifs are combined together by the linker. You can explore some of these compounds here.
The Preparation of betulinic acidBetulinic acid solubility and bioavailability are very low. Because of the low amounts yielded from natural birch bark, betulinic acid is often synthesized chemically from much more widely available betulin. The betulinic acid that we offer at clickbetulin.com is from nature by direct extraction. For more information and to buy our products online, please head over to our online store.
Most frequent questions and answers
Betulinic acid (Betulin acid) is a naturally occurring bioactive compound found in many plants. Due to its increased bioavailability, it shows higher potency in medicine and cosmetics than its more abundant derivative betulin itself. Betulinic acid serves as a popular additive in cosmetics and food supplementation, with research also showing positive applications for the reduction of cholesterol and the treatment of several types of cancer, whilst also exhibiting antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory properties.
Although betulinic acid can be found in nature (most prominently in birch bark) and therefore could be isolated, due to low amounts present it’s not a viable option. A much more practical way is chemical synthesis, where betulin is transformed into high quality betulinic acid with selective primary hydroxyl group oxidation and purification.
Betulinic acid is a popular additive in cosmetics, where it serves as a natural skin toner, skin restorer, and antioxidant. It can also aid in the treatment of dermatitis, psoriasis, and eczema. Betulinic acid is also used as a supplement and has been shown to improve several metabolic processes. It can also help with the treatment of high cholesterol and diabetes. Betulinic acid and its derivatives have found their place in clinics as a possible anticancer agent.
Betulinic acid benefits include the restoration and improvement of skin, mostly due to a reduction in oxidative stress by sensitizing the body’s natural ability to fight reactive radical molecules. Research also suggests that betulinic acid can help to regulate blood sugar levels by increasing insulin sensitivity, in turn helping to prevent diet-induced obesity. Others report that betulinic acid can aid in lowering cholesterol, and in some cases, can also help to maintain normal blood pressure.
We are a Europe-based distributor and we can provide you with high-quality betulinic acid as well as many more natural plant chemicals. If you can’t find exactly what you’re looking for, please contact our sales team at: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can order high-quality betulinic acid directly from our online store, and if you have any questions about our products or their possible applications, please head over to our contact page and get in touch!