Cough Response to Olive Oil Explained

  • Author: David Bradley
  • Published: 23 January 2011
  • Copyright: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA
  • Source / Publisher: Journal of Neuroscience/The Society for Neuroscience
thumbnail image: Cough Response to Olive Oil Explained

A receptor in the throat responds to two very different compounds in a similar way: it makes you cough. One of the compounds is the anti-inflammatory drug ibuprofen, the second is oleocanthal, a polyphenolic found in olive oil that also has anti-inflammatory activity.

US researchers explain that activation of the TRPA1 receptor could explain the throat sting and cough often experienced by lovers of olive oil. More importantly, they believe that the protective cough mechanism prevents toxins entering the lungs.
The receptor might be used to screen novel anti-inflammatories for activity.

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