One of the important functional characteristics of tempe is the anti-infective effect which was noted by Van Veen (1950), Wang et al (1969), Mien K. Mahmud (1987), and Sudigbia (1990). The antibacterial activity was first found out by Wang et al. Later Mien K. Mahmud (1987) confirmed by experimental feeding trials of rabbits exposed by pathological E. coli. It was found the antibacterial activity of tempe on the cell epitheliums protecting from further cell damage.
Sudigbia (1990) tested the hypothesis of children 6-24 months suffering from diarrhea on 431 cases and had shown positive effects on the duration, growth velocity after diarrhea episode. Therefore the specific problem is to provide a form of supplementary food for nutritional therapy an acute diarrhea as an effort for interrupting the cycle of diarrhea-malabsorption-diarrhea.
In 1991 Sibarani S. also published a study about the effect of tempe consumption in preventing diarrhea in rabbits inoculated with pathogenic E. coli. It was found that the Ig A transformed into SIgA when bacteria invades the surface of intestinal mucosa, preventing the infectious diarrhea. This fact indicated that the rabbits in the tempe group were more immune than those in the other group. Haritono and Sudigbia (1992) also studied the effect of tempe on the mucosal changes after diarrheal infections by using intestinal biopsy techniques and histopathological grading of recovery after tempe supplementation. The study showed 33.3% positive effect versus 6.7% control group which was significant.
The diarrhea (caused by microbiological agents identified such as E. coli, Rotavirus, Shigella, etc) had been treated with tempe responded positive especially in malnourished children where the intestinal villi were atrophied, had decreased humoral immunity, bacteria overgrowth and disturbance of local immunity (Chandra,1977). From the above, we can learned, tempe may increase the immunological system locally or generally against infections.
Clinical and biological studies by Kazuyoshi Okubo et al, (1994) unveil the outstanding role of soy ingredients in the strengthening of human body’s defense mechanism against infection, adult diseases notably against HIV (AIDS) infection and symptoms. It is of great interest whether tempe may exert stronger effects of anticancer and anti-HIV activities to respond to the challenging increase of AIDS and cancer incidence worldwide.
Author: Darwin Karyadi
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