Royal jelly is a product secreted by the maxillary and pharyngeal glands of young worker bees aged from the 6th to the 10th day of life, which they secrete into special honeycombs (queen cells) where bee queens develop. It is an opaque mass of white color with a creamy tint of a pasty consistency with a specific smell. The taste of royal jelly is sharp, may be sweet or sour. In a bee hive, this product is fed to uterine larvae and begins to feed worker bees.
Royal jelly of bees is an evolutionarily developed complex of physiologically active substances. It is successfully used in the world as a dietary and therapeutic product.
A number of drugs produced in Russia, together with bee milk, contain various plant extracts, the tonic effect of which on the human body has been time-tested: “API-SPLAT” – a natural combined preparation based on royal jelly with the addition of extracts of microalgae spirulina platensis and ginseng; “SPLAT-TONUS” differs from “API-SPLAT” in that instead of ginseng it contains Eleutherococcus extract; “Apital” – a combined preparation based on royal jelly with the addition of propolis (1% of propolis extract is added to 99% of royal jelly); “Apitonik” – 2% royal jelly, 4% pollen, 1% propolis and 93% honey; “Apiphytotonus” – in this preparation, the content of pollen is increased up to 20%; “Apitok” – 2% royal jelly, 1% propolis and honey; “Apimin B” contains a mixture of royal and drone jelly; “Apifor” – ointment for external use, contains propolis, royal jelly and bee bread; “Propopharyngitis” – contains honey, propolis and royal jelly.
In European countries, they produce drugs that, together with bee milk, also contain various plant extracts: in Germany – “Apifortel”; “Methadone”, “Melkacite” in Romania; in France – “Apiserum”; in Bulgaria – “Lacapis”; in Canada – “Longevex”, in the USA they use for the treatment of super royal jelly concentrate – “Super Strangsroyal Jelly”. The high physiological activity of this product caused its mass production abroad.
China annually produces more than 1,000 tons, and Japan imports at least 500 tons of royal jelly per year as raw materials for the needs of food, pharmaceutical and cosmetic industry. In Kazakhstan, the enterprise of the peasant farm “Apiary” produces over 200 tons of finished bee products per year. The products of PF “Apiary” arrive on the shelves not only in Kazakhstan, but also in Russia, Uzbekistan, and China. But in general, the list of domestic drugs in Kazakhstan is very small and amounts to units of names. Japan is undoubtedly the leader in the use of royal jelly. There are programs to provide royal jelly to children and the elderly for free. According to The Micronutrient Initiative (USA), fortification of food with biologically active substances allows: to prevent four out of ten child deaths, reduce maternal mortality by more than a third, increase efficiency by 40%, increase the gross product of the country by 5%.
Researchers from Stanford University decided to understand the mechanism of action of one of the components of royal jelly – royalactin protein. They were able to find out that this protein is able to influence mammalian stem cells, preventing them from turning into specialized tissue cells and promotes stem cell renewal. Humans have a similar protein, which opens up opportunities for creating new pharmacological preparations. The discovery of Stanford biologists gives prospects for the use of royalactin milk protein and its analogues in pharmacology, medicine and the food industry.
At the Kazakh Research Institute of Processing and Food Industry, within the framework of programme-aimed financing of the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Kazakhstan for 2021-2023, a scientific project is being implemented to develop a technology for the production and processing of royal jelly for the food industry. Together with the “Russian Bees” farm, scientists are working to obtain royal jelly in families of caregivers formed in different ways, a new technology for stabilizing royal jelly is proposed – adsorption with the help of dry honey and a new way of storing royal jelly in the mother liquor. The experimental data obtained by the authors on the content of vitamins and amino acids in royal jelly stored in mother liquors prove the high biological activity of this product. Further, on the basis of royal jelly, new biologically active food supplements will be developed – innovative products for the Kazakhstan market.
The author of the article is the project manager, candidate of technical sciences, L.B. Umiralieva