Egcel, Egg Albumen, Egg Extract, Egg Powder with Immune Components, Extrait d’Œuf, HEY, Huevo Hiperinmune, Hyperimmune Hen Egg, Hyperimmunized Egg Yolk, IgY, Immune Egg, Immunoglobulin Egg Extract, Immunoglobulin IgY, Œuf Hyperimmunisé, Yolk Immunoglobulin.
Hyperimmune egg is an egg from a hen that has been vaccinated against certain infectious diseases. The hen develops specific antibodies that rev up the immune system to fight the specific diseases included in the vaccination. These antibodies pass into the hen’s eggs. People harvest the eggs and remove the antibodies. These antibodies are then used to treat diseases in people.
Hyperimmune egg is used to treat diarrhea caused by rotavirus, infectious diarrhea, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and high cholesterol. It is also used for general stimulation of the immune system.
How does it work?
Antibodies contained in hyperimmune egg are thought to stimulate the immune system and help the body fight disease.
Most of the research on hyperimmune egg comes from the manufacturer of a specific brand name product (Immune26, Legacy for Life). This and related products contain the proprietary ingredient, Egcel, which is a specific hyperimmune egg extract. According to product information, this product is produced first by repeatedly immunizing hens with at least 24 inactivated bacteria including Shigella dysenteriae, Staphylococcus epidermidis and simulans, Escherichia coli (E. coli), Salmonella enteritidis and typhimurium, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, and at least 6 species of Streptococcus.
Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...
- Diarrhea caused by rotavirus (rotaviral diarrhea). Developing research suggests that a preparation of purified antibodies from hyperimmune eggs harvested from hens immunized against strains of rotavirus can modestly decrease rotaviral diarrhea in children aged 2-24 months.
- Osteoarthritis. One research study found that some people with osteoarthritis feel less joint pain or swelling after taking a specific “immune egg” powder formulation (Immune26, Legacy for Life) for 2 months. But some researchers believe this study was not well designed and the results might be questionable.
- Rheumatoid arthritis. One research study found that taking a specific “immune egg” powder formulation (Immune26, Legacy for Life) for 2 months does not significantly improve rheumatoid arthritis symptoms. Poor study design significantly limits the reliability of this research.
- High cholesterol. Developing research suggests that taking a specific “immune egg” powder formulation (Immune26, Legacy for Life) for 26 weeks does not significantly lower cholesterol.
- Infectious diarrhea.
- Other conditions.
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not enough is known about the use of hyperimmune egg during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
Egg allergy: Hyperimmune egg is made from chicken eggs. There is some concern that people who are allergic to chicken eggs might also be allergic to hyperimmune egg products.
The appropriate dose of hyperimmune egg depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for hyperimmune egg. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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Dean KL. Hyperimmune eggs capture natural immune support. Altern Complement Ther 2000;6:118-24.
Greenblatt HC, Adalsteinsson O, Kagen L. Administration to arthritis patients of a dietary supplement containing immune egg: An open-label pilot study. J Med Food 1998;1:171-9.
Jacoby HI, Moore G, Wnorowski G. Inhibition of diarrhea by immune egg: a castor oil mouse model. J Nutra Funct Med Foods 2001;3:47-53.
Karge WH, Deluca JP, Marchitelli LJ, et al. Pilot study on the effect of hyperimmune egg protein on elevated cholesterol levels and cardiovascular risk factors. J Med Food 1999;2:51-63.
Sarker SA, Casswall TH, Juneja LR, et al. Randomized, placebo-controlled, clinical trial of hyperimmunized chicken egg yolk immunoglobulin in children with rotavirus diarrhea. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr 2001;32:19-25. View abstract.