Many of the world’s leading researchers into the effects of very high dilutions have attended the GIRI (Groupe International de Recherche sur I’Infinitesimal) conference in Florence to discuss their latest findings.
A number of research groups are now using state of the art genetic techniques to investigate the effects of homeopathic remedies – a telling sign that homeopathy research is thriving. These techniques provided us with a front row view of the intimate changes occurring at the level of the genome upon exposure to homeopathic remedies. Exciting results examining the changes of gene expression in wheat upon exposure to homeopathic preparations were presented by Dr Dinelli. An investigation into the changes in gene expression of stressed cells by Dr Marzotto showed that Gelsemium 30CH reduced the activity of 45 genes, while increasing that of seven others.
Dr Khuda-Bukhsh also used genetic techniques, this time to investigate the effect of homeopathy in preventing virus infections in E-Coli. Dr Pierre Dorfman presented results from treating Metabolic Syndrome with a combination remedy, using gene expression profiling to show that the combination remedy had regulating effects on various genes. Finally, Dr Mazzoli presented her positive results using a homeopathic preparation to treat genital HPV viral infections (linked to development of cervical cancer), using genetic techniques to detect the presence of the different cancer-causing viruses.
Another presentation featured the wide array of physical techniques, from conductometry to fluorescence microscopy, which Dr Elia has brought to bear on the problem of homeopathy. Delegates also heard of Dr Grimaldi’s new experiments on the electromagnetic properties of water.
Multiple teams worldwide are working on the key issue of finding the most reproducible methods for basic research experiments investigating homeopathic dilutions. Prof Endler presented the results of a replication study by his team, confirming that potentised Gibberellic Acid (GA 30c) influences wheat stalk growth. They also detected an interesting phenomenon whereby the effect of GA 30c was dependent on the season during which the experiment was carried out, with the strongest effects being observed in autumn.
The groups of Dr Baumgartner and Dr Betti, as well as Dr Borisovna, presented a promising new method for measuring effects of homeopathic medicines on the crystallisation of samples and analysis of the complexity of the ensuing patterns. These methods are showing promising results in terms of reproducibility and could provide a reliable readout of homeopathy effects in the future. Dr Baumgartner also presented his review of the basic research in homeopathy, stressing the need for adequate controls and reproduction of results once in different labs.
The intensive work to continually improve methods used in basic science research of homeopathy being carried out by these various teams, bodes well for future developments in the field.
A version of this report by Alex Tournier first appeared on the Homeopathic Research Institute’s website