This is our most exciting issue to date. We continue our mission to bring you the most relevant clinical information and concepts regarding restorative medicine. We begin this issue with several original research articles in the areas of bone health, inflammation, and prostate cancer. Sadeq Quraishi, MD, MHA, MMSc, Elizabeth Jacob, BA, Livnat Blum, BA, Hany Bedair, MD, and Andrew Freiberg, MD, present an NIH-funded study looking at the association of vitamin D status and pre-operative physical activity in patients with hip or knee osteoarthritis. The authors show that vitamin D levels were associated with pre-operative physical activity scores, in the hopes of paving the way for prospective, randomized clinical trials.

Echinacea purpurea is frequently use to prevent and treat upper respiratory infections (URI), but the results of randomized controlled trials have been mixed. There is evidence suggesting that the URI-preventative properties of Echinacea may be due to enhanced pro-inflammatory cytokine production by polysaccharides in aqueous extracts. Cynthia Wenner, PhD, Erica Oberg, ND, MPH, and James Taylor, MD, present their study assessing the effects of orally administered Echinacea extracts vs. placebo on pro-inflammatory cytokine responses. In this article, three different aqueous formulations of Echinacea purpurea extracts are evaluated for pro-inflammatory cytokine-enhancing effects.

Eric Yarnell, ND, RH(AHG), contributes two articles to this issue. One is an original research article focusing on the use of artemisinin for prostate cancer. This preliminary case series presents the results of using high-dose, pulsed oral artemisinin three times a day every other week for 3–24 months and utilized outcome measures that include PSA doubling time and velocity. Dr. Yarnell’s second article reviews the available literature on the additive effects involving medicinal herbs and herbal extracts. Several synergistic interactions are discussed among multiple herbal species.

Regina Druz, MD, FACC, FASNC, contributes a concise clinical research review of chelation therapy for cardiovascular disease. Chelation therapy has been used by alternative medicine practitioners to alleviate heavy metal and other various metabolic toxicities. This focused review discusses the results of the NIH-funded trial whereby chelation therapy was used to treat coronary artery disease. The trial showed that EDTA chelation reduced the primary endpoint (including total mortality, recurrent myocardial infarction, and others) by 18% overall. The positive and significant impact of chelation therapy on morbidity and mortality of patients already receiving standard treatment is pivotal to the advancement of chelation therapy treatments.

In this issue, we present three review articles that focus on thyroid health. Brock McGregor, ND, contributes two articles on this topic. The first article is titled “Extra-Thyroidal Factors Impacting Thyroid Hormone Homeostasis: A Review.” This article reviews many of the factors influencing the peripherally active pathways of thyroid hormone conversion and helps to explain why many patients continue to experience symptoms consistent with hypothyroidism, even when their thyroid blood tests are normal. His second article is titled “The Role of Selenium in Thyroid Autoimmunity: A Review.” This article highlights and discusses selenium as a therapeutic intervention with regards to Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and Grave’s disease. The last article on thyroid health is presented by Mélanie DesChâtelets, ND. Her review investigates the thermogenic properties of thyroid hormone on brown and white adipose tissue and the potential clinical implications for weight loss.

Michael Gonzalez, DSc, NMD, PhD, FACN, Jorge Miranda-Massari, PharmD, Jorge Duconge, PhD, Jose Rodriguez, DSc, PhD, MD, Kenneth Cintron, MD, FAAOS, ABIHM, Miguel Berdiel, MD, and Jose Rodriguez, PhD, contribute a review article of nutrigenomics, the study of the effects of food and food constituents on gene expression. This paper summarises numerous novel principles that show how food, lifestyle, and environmental factor influence gene expression.

Tal Friedman, ND, contributes an article that reviews the effects of rosmarinic acid on immunological and neurological systems. This review also discusses the potential of rosmarinic acid as a novel therapeutic agent for the treatment of conditions in which oxidative stress is a factor.

I would personally like to thank all of the contributors and our readers who continue to make the Journal of Restorative Medicine a success. I would also like to thank all of our peer reviewers for their efforts in improving the quality of our work. In addition, I would like to personally thank Chris Habib, ND, who has taken on the role of Executive Associate Editor for the journal, and Sadeq Quraishi, MD, MHA, MMSc, who was our Chief Scientific Officer for this issue. We look forward to continued success and hope that clinicians and scientists will continue to contribute their research with our readership in an effort to promote the use of natural health products and advance the knowledge and understanding of restorative medicine.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.14200/jrm.2015.4.0111