Treating these conditions may be among the most useful uses for Forskolin. Forskolin's basic cardiovascular action is to lower blood pressure, while simultaneously increasing the contractility of the heart. Forskolin administration dramatically improved left ventricular function and overall cardiovascular performance.
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Forskolin also increases cerebral blood flow, indicating that it may be beneficial in cerebral vascular insufficiency and in enhancing post-stroke recovery. The platelet aggregation-inhibiting effects of Forskolin also add to its value in cardiovascular disorders.
Forskolin acts primarily by activating the enzyme adenylate cyclase, which results in increased cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) in cells. Thus, Forskolin can increase cyclic AMP without the assistance of neurotransmitters or hormones.
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Forskolin is an effective smooth-muscle relaxer, resulting in bronchodilation, decreased airway resistance, and increased vital capacity and forced expiratory volume, which are important indicators of pulmonary function. Forskolin also has tremendous antispasmodic action on various smooth muscles in the body, making it useful to relieve intestinal colic, uterine cramps, painful urination, angina, and hypertension.
What Are the Cardiovascular Effects of Forskolin?
A number of diseases are characterized, in part, by decreased intracellular levels of cyclic AMP. These include asthma, eczema, psoriasis, hypertension, obesity and angina. In addition to its adenylyl cyclase-stimulating actions, Forskolin also appears to have actions that are not due to this mechanism, but are due to its ability to alter a number of membrane transport proteins.
Can Forskolin Help with Asthma and Allergies?
This mechanism is the “flip side” of Forskolin's ability to act directly to increase cAMP. Thus, Forskolin can be used by itself, or in addition to phosphodiesterase-inhibiting drugs in the prevention and treatment of many allergic conditions, including asthma.
Increased cellular cyclic AMP results in a broad range of biochemical and physiological effects, including inhibition of platelet activation (resulting in decreased likelihood of blood clots), reduced release of histamine (resulting in decreased allergy symptoms), increased force of contraction of the heart, relaxation of the arteries and other smooth muscles, increased thyroid function, and increased lipolysis (fat burning).
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German scientists have been working with a different approach to elevating catecholamines, using a class of drugs that stimulate both the presynaptic as well as the postsynaptic components of catecholamanergic transmission. This novel approach uses a drug, Rolipram, which acts by increasing cAMP (an action similar to that of Forskolin), and inhibiting phosphodiesterase. The researchers stopped short of recommending Forskolin for the treatment of depression, they stated clearly that “elevated brain cAMP levels are closely linked to antidepressant activity in animal models of depression.”.
How Forskolin Works
How Forskolin Works: Forskolin also exhibits potent immune system enhancement by activating lymphocytes and macrophages.
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