A team of researchers at the University of Ilorin have established the capacity of bromelain derivable from pineapple fruits in the management of Coronavirus (COVID-19) cases.
The Head, Department of Physiology, University of Ilorin, Professor Bamidele Victor Owoeye, disclosed this during the presentation of a publication titled “Bromelain reduced pro-inflammatory mediators as a common pathway that mediates antinociceptive and antianxiety effects in sciatic nerve litigated Wistar rats”.
It was co-produced with Mr Ahmed Olalekan Bakare, a Ph.D. candidate at the University.
Owoeye said the study, which was conducted at the University and derived from the doctoral thesis of Bakare, has shown that pineapple fruits could be more beneficial to the body especially in the treatment of pain resulting from nerve injuries called neuropathically.
He explained that it was also clear that while bromelain, derived from pineapple fruits, could relieve the pain from nerve injuries, it also nourishes the injured nerves thereby helping to minimise the injury.
He said, “bromelain has the capacity to enhance the functions of injured nerves by reducing the activities and concentration of inflammatory chemicals that are generated when nerves are injured,”.
He then called the attention of authorities concerned in the management of COVID-19 to the potency of bromelain/pineapple in the management of the virus because “the pineapple fruits contain Bromelain that actively reduces cytokines concentration, which are implicated in the destructive actions of COVID-19.
Owoeye explained that it was the intervention of Prof. Yakubu, which eventuated in the waiving of the charges for the publication that is now attracting the attention of the global scientific community as a work that has the potential of addressing many health challenges particularly the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic.
He, therefore, charged the authorities of the University of Ilorin to institutionalise a reward system that would encourage more scientific breakthroughs among researchers at the university, especially among its students.
In his remarks, Chairman of the occasion and Dean of the Postgraduate School, University of Ilorin, Professor Gafar Bello, commended the researchers for a job well done, which he said would further confirm the position of the University at the global level.
He described the publication as a measure of good research and commended Bakare for promoting the visibility of the University of Ilorin, saying that many research centres would run after him.
While decrying the fraudulent activities of some senior academics who hijack the works of their supervisees, Bello assured that the management of the University would in addition to the prime prize often given to the researcher of the Year consider a way of rewarding excellence among students especially those at the postgraduate level.