- Shark cartilage (tough elastic tissue that provides support, much as bone does) used for medicine comes primarily from sharks caught in the Pacific Ocean. Several types of extracts are made from shark cartilage including squalamine lactate, AE-941, and U-995.
- Shark cartilage is most famously used for cancer, including a type of cancer called Kaposi’s sarcoma, that is more common in people with HIV infection. Shark cartilage is also used for arthritis, psoriasis, wound healing, damage to the retina of the eye due to diabetes, and inflammation of the intestine (enteritis).
- Some people apply shark cartilage directly to the skin for arthritis and psoriasis.
- Shark cartilage might help prevent tumor growth.
- Shark cartilage is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken appropriately by mouth for up to 40 months or when applied to the skin for up to 8 weeks.
- It can cause a bad taste in the mouth, nausea, vomiting, stomach upset, constipation, low blood pressure, dizziness, high blood sugar, high calcium levels, and fatigue. Some products have an unpleasant odor and taste.
- Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking shark cartilage if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
- High calcium levels (hypercalcemia): Shark cartilage might increase calcium levels, so it should not be used by people whose calcium levels are already too high.
AE-941, Cartilage de Requin, Cartilage de Requin du Pacifique, Cartilago de Tiburon, Collagène Marin, Extrait de Cartilage de Requin, Liquide de Cartilage Marin, Marine Collagen, Marine Liquid Cartilage, MSI-1256F, Neovastat, Pacific Shark Cartilage, Poudre de Cartilage de Requin, Shark Cartilage Powder, Shark Cartilage Extract, Sphyrna lewini, Squalus acanthias.
Source: WebMD, “Shark Cartilage”, www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/