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Emu Oil Research Summaries

The following are several emu oil research summaries that have been conducted by various universities, hospitals and research teams.

Fatty Acid Analysis of Emu Oil:
(AEA funded study, 1994) By: Dr. Paul Smith, Dr. Margaret Craig-Schmidt, Amanda Brown at Auburn University.

Analysis of fatty acids in emu oil reveals that it contains approximately 70% unsaturated fatty acids. The major fatty acid found in emu oil is oleic acid, which is mono- unsaturated and which comprises over 40% of the total fatty acid content. Emu oil also contains both of the two essential fatty acids (EFA's) which are important to human health: 20% linoleic, and 1 - 2% alpha-linolenic acid.

Emu Oil Comedogenicity Testing:
(Study done for E.R.I., 1993) By: Department of Dermatology, at University of Texas Medical School, Houston.

Testing emu oil in concentrations of 25%, 75% and 100% shows that emu oil in concentrations of up to 100% is non-comedogenic, i.e. it does not clog the pores of the skin.

Moisturizing and Cosmetic Properties of Emu Oil:
A Double Blind Study (1994). By: Dr. Alexander Zemtsov, Indiana University School of Medicine: Dr. Monica Gaddis, Ball Memorial Hospital; and Dr. Victor Montalvo-Lugo, Ball Memorial Hospital.

Eleven human subjects took part in a double-blind clinical study which compared emu oil with mineral oil in texture, skin permeability and moisturizing properties, as well as comedogenicity and irritability to the skin. No irritation to the skin was observed with either oil. However, comedogenicity of emu oil was significantly lower than that of mineral oil, and all subjects stated a unanimous preference for emu oil.

Composition of Emu Oil:
The Micro View (1997) By: Dr. Leigh Hopkins, AEA Oil Standards Team.

When compared with human skin oil, the fatty acid composition of emu oil is found to be quite similar. In both types of oil, mono-unsaturated oleic acid is the most prevalent fatty acid, followed by palmitic acid, then linoleic acid, which is an EFA (essential fatty acid). This similarity may be one of the factors enabling emu oil to have such a positive action on human skin.

Experimental Study to Determine the Anti-Arthritic Activity of a New Emu Oil Formulation:
(EMMP) (1993) By: Dr. Peter Ghosh at Royal North Shore Hospital of Sydney, Australia and Dr. Michael Whitehouse at University of Adelaide, Australia.

A combination of emu oil with a suitable transdermal transporter is found to show anti-inflammatory (anti-rheumatic) activity in various rat models.

Emu Oil: A Source of Non-Toxic Transdermal Anti-Inflammatory Agents in Aboriginal Medicine:
(1997) By: Dr. Michael Whitehouse and Athol Turner, Dept. of Medicine, University of Queensland, Australia. (Source: Inflammopharmacology, San Francisco, March 1997 conference proceedings).

Ongoing studies on the anti-inflammatory activity of emu oils, as tested using the arthritis-induced rat model, indicate that different emu oils vary in their ability to suppress arthritic symptoms and that a chemical test for biological activity is needed rather than continuing to use the rat model.

Emu Cream Assists Lidocaine:
Local Anesthetic Absorption through Human Skin (1997) By: Dr. William Code. (Presented at the 88th American Oil Chemists Society, May 1997).

In his initial work with an emu oil based cream combined with spearmint oil and lidocaine, Dr. Code has found that this mixture appears to produce a reduced sensation in the skin as compared with another mixture of local anesthetics without emu oil. The goal is to reduce sensitivity to the skin in a safe, fast and effective way for procedures such as suturing or giving injections.

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