Science Behind Resol Technology
The Science behind Resol Technology
Nature has a habit of creating remedies for human ailments. It is sometimes difficult to imagine that around 80% of all pharmaceuticals are derived from plants. For centuries, mankind has been harnessing the power of naturally sourced compounds. In some cases they fall out of favour and with others, curious scientists decide to investigate them in greater detail to find out exactly what it is that makes them work. Spruce resin is a fantastic example of this. For over 4 centuries the population of Northern Finland have been mixing dried resin from the trunks of spruce trees, mixing it with a suitable fat, such as butter and applying it to wounds. Its effectiveness was even documented in an ancient Nordic Medial textbook from 1578.
So, how does it work?
Spruce resin is a mixture of hundreds of compounds produced by a coniferous tree in response to physical damage caused by animals, lightning, or other forces of nature. The purpose of the resin is to protect the tree from external influences including different microbes (bacteria, fungi, yeast, mould) and insects, as well as dehydration and other physical stress. The tree produces at first a so called physiological resin which provides a physical barrier. Gradually, over a period of a few months, other components that are highly critical for the long-term protection and healing of the defect migrate into the resin from the tree. The resin composition is based on a natural evolution throughout millions of years enabling the trees to live in a hostile environment.
”When a tree gets a wound, a branch is torn, or winter breaks the cover of the tree, it produces resin to heal itself. Our studies are the result of nature’s own research into all the bacteria, fungus, yeast etc. that live in forests. A tree needs to protect itself and resin is its unique defence mechanism.”
In 2000, Dr Arno Sipponen started his GP service in Lapland where he together with his colleagues wondered how the locals were so successfully treating wounds with a home made resin salve. At the time Arno’s father was chief of the department of clinical pathology at the Helsinki University Central Hospital. They formed a cross-functional research team to study this remedy.
Their findings, published in a Ph.D. Thesis in 2013 demonstrated that, amongst the hundreds of chemicals present in mature spruce resin there were certain components which possessed remarkable properties. The extensive research done on the resin components demonstrated
- Strong broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity against common pathogens
- Strong anti-inflammatory action
- An ability to Enhance the re-epithelialization of the skin (aid wound closure)
Resin is strongly broad-spectrum antimicrobial against common bacteria, fungi and yeasts, including typical resistant bacterial strains like MRSA and VRE. It is especially effective against gram positive bacteria but it also does work on certain gram negative bacteria, like E. coli. Wound infections are often caused by Staphylococcus aureus or its resistant version MRSA, which are covered in the antibacterial efficacy of the resin.
Norwegian Spruce Resin has been tested in both clinical and laboratory settings and found to exert a powerful inhibitory effect against common fungi responsible for fungal infections on the body. Where the nail as are concerned, the most common fungi responsible are those called dermatophytes, the most common of these is called Trichophyton Rubrum. This single organism accounts for approximately 75% of infections of the toenails. The resin is very effective against this and also the other Trichophyton species in particular. Resin has been shown to be strongly microbicidal also against common yeasts causing infections in human and animals, like Malasezzia, a yeast often present in seborrheic conditions and Candida albicans.
Secondly, resin has also strong anti-inflammatory effect reducing the inflammation and its symptoms, like cortico-steroids. Resin components are shown to provide inhibition of the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines in in vitro tests.
Thirdly, certain resin components are proven to enhance re-epithelialization of the skin having positive influence on the re-growth of the skin, which positively impacts the scar and keloid formation.
To capture this natural, unique defence mechanism and prepare it to be used as medical devices in a modern medicine requires evidence on safety, efficacy and product functionality according to ISO 13485 requirements. The manufacture employs unique and patented processes in manufacturing of solutions including the active components of the natural Spruce resin. The processes are designed to provide stable and safe solutions maintaining the broad natural effectiveness of the resin that protects and heals the coniferous trees. With extensive studies these resin- based products have been shown to be safe. There is only one known contraindication which would prevent use. Resin allergy, caused by components that are known to cause contact allergic reactions in people who are sensitive to natural resin can occur in 1-3% of the general population which rapidly resolves following discontinuation of use.
Resin is collected from trees in Northern Finland without harming them in this process. Controlled collection and quality control ensures the quality of the resin with full natural efficacy.
Ongoing Research and Development
Research & Development and a strong focus on scientific and clinical evidence has been a cornerstone of operation from the outset. The scientific base for all products lies in the foundational research conducted on Norway Spruce resin and its efficacy on treatment of humans and animals. The research team consisting of multi-disciplinary experts from fields of medicine, microbiology, mycology, chemistry, forestry and technology has been able to prove scientifically the safety and efficacy of resin and its resin products. Several clinical trials have been conducted on multiple products and indications in association with experts in their field. We are actively working in strengthening our clinical trial base also in the future with new studies.