One of the biggest arguments against Yogic practice in the context of therapy tends to stem from the view point that Yoga may only serve as a holistic long term habit with no real acute or short term impact.
In a study published in 2013, Prof. Saatcioglu at the University of Oslo showed that four consecutive days of practicing Yoga through simple breathing exercises resulted in changes in gene expression. This is a new look at the direct impact of Yoga on gene regulation (1).
Prof. Saatcioglu also proposes that Yogic practice may reduce inflammation and cell stress, which are central to a number of maladies, including insulin resistance, Type 2 diabetes mellitus and even cancers. Researchers in Los Angeles have recently demonstrated that Iyengar yoga can help reduce inflammation through lowering tumour necrosis factor-alpha in breast cancer survivors (2).
More studies are now trying to treat Yoga therapy as a genuine and structured hypothesis. Indeed in the coming years, new mechanisms about the contribution of particular branches of Yoga to certain health benefits may be discovered.
Prof. Saaticoglu is a prolific scientist, and has contributed to science in several renowned and reputed centers, including Harvard Medical School and University of Oslo. To read more about his research follow the link http://www.mn.uio.no/ibv/personer/vit/fahris/index.html