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Ozone therapy is one of the most powerful and versatile therapies known today. Extensive medical research on ozone therapy has been done primarily in Europe. Through its mechanism of action, ozone has beneficial effects on every part of the body. The effects include:
- Inactivation of bacteria, viruses and fungi: Ozone disrupts the integrity of the bacterial cell envelope through peroxidation of the phospholipids and lipoproteins. In fungi, ozone inhibits cell growth at certain stages. With viruses, the ozone oxidizes the viral capsid and disrupts the reproductive cycle by interrupting the virus-to-cell contact with peroxidation. Cells previously infected by viruses are more susceptible to destruction by the peroxide produced through ozonolysis, because they have weak enzyme coatings.
- Enhancement of circulation: In circulatory disease, a clumping of red blood cells hinders blood flow and decreases oxygen absorption due to reduced surface area. There is a decrease in red blood cell flexibility which prevents them traveling down the tiniest capillaries, and blood viscosity increases. With ozone therapy, clumping is reduced or eliminated and flexibility is restored, along with oxygen carrying ability. Oxygenation of the tissues increases as the arterial partial pressure increases, and viscosity decreases. Ozone also oxidizes the plaque in arteries allowing the removal of the breakdown products, unclogging vessels.
- Stimulation of oxygen metabolism: Ozone causes an increase in the red blood cell glycolysis rate. This leads to the stimulation of 2.3-diphosphoglycerate which shifts the oxyhemoglobin disassociation curve to the right. This leads to an increase in the amount of oxygen released to the surrounding tissues. There is a stimulation of the production of the enzymes which act as free radical scavengers and cell wall protectors: glutathione peroxidase, catalase and superoxide dismutase. Ozone activates the Krebs cycle by enhancing oxidative decarboxylation of pyruvate, stimulating production of ATP.
- Dissolution of malignant tumors: Malignant cells have an increased rate of glycolysis which leads to the production of more lactic acid. With ozone therapy, there is a significant decrease in lactate production, showing that the metabolism is being inhibited. Tumor cells have a peroxide intolerance due to insufficient glutathione peroxidase and catalase. Ozone is thus able to oxidize the outer lipid layer of malignant cells and destroy them through cell lysis.
- Activation of the immune system: Ozone stimulates the production of gamma interferon and interleukin-2 in the body. From this there is a cascade of subsequent immunological reactions.
- Formation of peroxides: Ozone reacts with the unsaturated fatty acids of the lipid layer in cellular membranes, forming hydro peroxides. Lipid peroxidation products include peroxyl radicals, vital for killer cell action.