Saffron in metabolic syndrome: its effects on antibody titers to heat-shock proteins 27, 60, 65 and 70

J Complement Integr Med. 2014 Feb 6;11(1):43-9. doi: 10.1515/jcim-2013-0047.


Background: The metabolic syndrome is the most important risk factor for cardiovascular disease. The heat shock proteins (HSPs) are highly conserved families of proteins expressed by a number of cell types following exposure to stressful environmental conditions include several known risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Recent studies have shown the potential of constituents of saffron in the treatment of atherosclerosis. We aimed on investigating the effect of saffron on antibody titers to HSP in patients with metabolic syndrome.

Methods: This was a randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial. One-hundred and five subjects with metabolic syndrome were randomly allocated to one of the three groups: the case group received 100 mg/day saffron, the placebo control group received a capsule of placebo and a non-placebo control group received no capsule, for 12 weeks.

Results: Antibodies against heat shock proteins 27, 60, 65 and 70 were determined in all patients before (week 0) and after (week 6 and 12) intervention. At 12 weeks, saffron produced a significantly decrease in AntiHSP27, 70 levels. Saffron can decrease AntiHSP27, 70 levels in patients with metabolic syndrome.

Conclusions: The results of this study indicate the efficacy of saffron in the improvement of some markers of autoimmunity HSPs in patients with metabolic syndrome.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antibodies / drug effects
  • Antibodies / metabolism
  • Capsules
  • Crocus*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Heat-Shock Proteins / drug effects*
  • Heat-Shock Proteins / immunology
  • Humans
  • Lipid Metabolism / drug effects
  • Male
  • Metabolic Syndrome / drug therapy*
  • Middle Aged
  • Phytotherapy / methods*
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use*
  • Waist Circumference / drug effects
  • Weight Loss / drug effects
  • Young Adult


  • Antibodies
  • Capsules
  • Heat-Shock Proteins
  • Plant Extracts