Usnic Acid dangers?

  1. Usnic Acid dangers?

    it has been expressed to me that there may be some dangers from the use of Usnic Acid. Please post all concerns and experiences in this thread. As well as some helpful info/sites. Thanks.

    I'll start us off here. i found this while doing some research at

    Let’s look at the facts.

    Clastogenic effects or effects on the spindle apparatus imply chromosome injury. Does this impress me with the fear? NO. The natural juice extracts from Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kohlrabi, broccoli, turnips, mustards, and horse radish all cause dramatic clastogenic effects, and mutations, based on Ames testing (they are Ames test positive).

    I guess (at least according to Mr. Strasser) we should immediately stop eating these vegetables (silly, isn’t it?). The above referenced study was published at the prestigious Institute of Tumor Biology and Cancer Research, University of Vienna, Austria and is entitled “Genotoxic effects of crude juices from Brassica vegetables and juices from phytopharmaceutical preparations and spices of cruciferous plants origin in bacterial and mammalian cells,” published in Chem Biol Interact; Vol 102, ISS 1, 1996, pp.1-16.

    Based on all medical research found in an extensive search of current literature, these vegetables are far worse than usnic acid (a flavonoid). Usnic acid is Ames test negative!! As such, usnic acid is not clastogenic.

    Further, the spindle apparatus article referred to by Mr. Strasser indicated that when mice were treated with HUGE doses of usnic acid they had a SLIGHT increase in red blood cells, thereby “suggesting” an effect on the spindle apparatus (cell division). The dosage given the mice was approximately 100 times the dosage found in diet supplements. The scientific literature supports the fact that usnic acid will not effect the spindle apparatus if taken in normal quantities.

    Mr. Strasser also asserts that usnic acid is “vile” because it is an uncoupler and its action is similar to other chemical based uncouplers. Mr. Strasser’s logic then implies that all uncouplers are inherently “vile” (I’m happy I didn’t have the same professor and course in Logic 101 that Brock Strasser enrolled in). Ethanol, the drinking alcohol of which some of us occasionally partake, has a chemical structure of two carbons with a hydroxyl group (CH3 CH2 OH). Methanol, wood alcohol, has only one less carbon atom (CH3 OH) than Ethanol. People feel good and party when they imbibe Ethanol, they go blind when they imbibe Methanol. Enough said about Mr. Strasser’s logic courses and fear tactics— you get the point.

    Mr. Strasser’s scare tactics are McCarthy’ism at its cheap best.

  2. heres a post form a guy on another board:

    Why usnic acid causes liver failure/cancer (post #1)

    UA is generally a much weaker uncoupler than DNP.. HOWEVER THERE ARE VERY UNPLEASANT EXCEPTIONS..

    this study bodes very ill for the use of usnic acid and the link to liver failure/cancer..

    UA requires 1/50 the dose to cause complete halt of oxidative phoshoralation in the liver as compared to DNP...

    interesting that the users of LIPO-k have liver failure.

    1: Nat Toxins 1996;4(2):96-102 Related Articles, Links

    Lichen acids as uncouplers of oxidative phosphorylation of mouse-liver mitochondria.

    Abo-Khatwa AN, al-Robai AA, al-Jawhari DA.

    Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Science, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

    Three lichen acids-namely, (+)usnic acid, vulpinic acid, and atranorin-were isolated from three lichen species (Usnea articulata, Letharia vulpina, and Parmelia tinctorum, respectively). The effects of these lichen products on mice-liver mitochondrial oxidative functions in various respiratory states and on oxidative phosphorylation were studied polarographically in vitro. The lichen acids exhibited characteristics of the 2,4-dinitrophenol (DNP), a classical uncoupler of oxidative phosphorylation. Thus, they released respiratory control and oligomycin inhibited respiration, hindered ATP synthesis, and enhanced Mg(+2)-ATPase activity. (+)Usnic acid at a concentration of 0.75 microM inhibited ADP/O ratio by 50%, caused maximal stimulation of both state-4 respiration (100%) and ATPase activity (300%). Atranorin was the only lichen acid with no significant effect on ATPase. The uncoupling effect was dose-dependent in all cases. The minimal concentrations required to cause complete uncoupling of oxidative phosphorylation were as follows: (+)usnic acid (1 microM), vulpinic acid, atranorin (5 microM) and DNP (50 microM). It was postulated that the three lichen acids induce uncoupling by acting on the inner mitochondrial membrane through their lipophilic properties and protonophoric activities

    THIS "supplement" is VERY UNSAFE

    thats a link for oxidative phosphorylation

    In my personal opinion, I think this could be used safely, doing the 2 weeks on 2weeks of method. I would suggest people know what kind of information is out there, before they use ANYTHING.

    WYD, I know you ahve a lot of info on this, so if you could post something that suggests it is perfectly safe that would be cool!!

    I just want to reiterate that Im not bashing UA at all, as I plan on taking it myself, so I don't want anyone to get pissed at me.



  3. I am currently working on an article that will address various aspects of usnic acid, feedback, etc....

    All I ask from this thread is that people do not post that something is a danger unless they can back it up.

    Chaseroy already denounced the slight clastogenic effects visible from the AMES testing.

    This is what I wrote previously.... this should help to start:

    Some users have developed a rash. 1 or 2 users vomited. 1 user had elevated liver enzyme levels. All side effects are/were reversible.

    Using ALA is not a bad idea as there has been speculation that UA might put some stress on the liver.

    What people need to realize is that just because something is a supplement and over the counter, does not mean that it can be toyed with. Usnic acid is powerful and effective yet it is new, and it will be a while before fat loss trials/studies start to roll in.

    I recommend 2 week cycles (followed by 2 weeks off obviously)
    ALA if you feel like it (and maybe vitamin C,E, and Magnesium)
    Drink a ton of water each day.

    These three recommendations will help make your cycle successful unless you just have some allergic reaction to UA (Ie - the rash that we see).

    On a side note: I get sick and tired of hearing people make these outrageous unsubstantiated claims like "UA is dangerous, stay away". Usnic acid has not been shown to be any more "dangerous" than an ECA stack...(and I know that UA isn't addictive like E,C). READ: WITH EVERY EFFECTIVE SUPPLEMENT, THERE WILL BE PEOPLE THAT HAVE AN ADVERSE REACTION. Take ECA,NYC,PH's, whatever... Furthermore, this is totally common to see in prescription drugs as well. Just listen to any advertisement on TV for prescription medicines/drugs and you will hear at the end something like "Side effects include: nausea, vomited, dizzyness, nose bleads, etc...".

    This is not a bash against anyone, I am just trying to set the record straight and explain where the factual information stands for usnic acid at this point.

  4. Thanks,
    good post. Im glad I can actually get to see something other then negative feedback about UA.


  5. I once wrote a long treatise (two actually) critiquing Strasser's idiocy. He obviously knows next to nothing about Genetic Toxicology, how the tests are conducted nor what the results really mean.

    While clastogenicity was demonstrated by the increase in micronucleated (immature) red blood cells in the one mouse micronucleus test to which he referred, UA does not cause point mutations, as shown by the negative Ames test (Ames test screens for point mutations, micronucleus test screens for clastogenicity). Neither test comes close to proving cancer causing ability, and neither has a THING to do with liver toxicity.

    That post referring to that other study, about "Why usnic acid causes liver failure/cancer" is an other bunch of horse ****. The study is valid, but is not all that earth-shaking. All it says is that Usnic Acid WORKS. It is indeed an uncoupler, and the study cited proves it. Uncouplers can shut down the liver completely if OVERDOSED. The crap regarding it being 50 times as potent as DNP relates to the concentration in the liver, not the amount ingested. And that study says nothing about liver cancer.

    I don't know how I allowed myself to bother even writing that much about it. But so far I haven't seen any INTELLIGENT argument why UA is such an evil thing, as long as it is used with care and at proper dosage. So far all I've seen is this B.S. which indicates the author doesn't even know WTF he (or she) is talking about.

  6. Once again, thanks to DaddyR for always shedding light on the issue.... Many people write me off as being biased because I sell UA (available on the bdcnutrition main site - shameless plug ), but its nice to see someone who is educated, who has absolutely no vested interest in UA come in and logical explain that conclusions drawn from some of these studies are utter bull****...

  7. Originally posted by whosyourdaddy02
    Once again, thanks to DaddyR for always shedding light on the issue.... Many people write me off as being biased because I sell UA (available on the bdcnutrition main site - shameless plug ), but its nice to see someone who is educated, who has absolutely no vested interest in UA come in and logical explain that conclusions drawn from some of these studies are utter bull****...
    Definately thanks are in order to DaddyR. Cleared up some aprehension for me about using it, to tell you the truth I would have probably used it

    "all things in moderation" ----true about almost all things IMO

    also, to tell you the truth WYD, I personally never have written you off as being biased. One reason, you always put "shameless plug" another is that IMO you never deny it had potential for danger (like all supps IMO)

    Others for example on sites we will leave unnamed ..will endlessly plug their ****, ie. yohimburn

    Not that im saying that it didnt work either, but the people will automatically cut you off if you post somehting negative about their product. I can honestly say, so far this has been one of the only boards to off truly unbiased, "OPEN" discussion.



  8. I finished the article about usnic acid and the dangers/side effects associated with the product. If anyone is interested in reading this check out:****349

    I think you will find the article very informative.

    Thank you


  9. good article bro! very informative and it really shedded some light on all the BS and speculation that has been surround UA for months.



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