Investigating the beneficial immune effects of alternative medicines including natural products and synthetic drugs
Nur Syahirah Alias
Date of Issue2016
School of Biological Sciences
Nutraceuticals such as porcupine dates extract (PE) and edible bird’s nest (EBN) have long been established for their medical benefits. Despite their long use, there has been a dearth of scientific evidence to substantiate their therapeutic claims. For this reason, we sought to investigate the immunological properties of two natural products, PE and EBN, in order to validate their use for future immune-related therapy. We found that PE induced-leukemic cell count over a course of four weeks showed that PE has anti-proliferative property while EBN displayed anti-viral and anti-inflammatory characteristics. The latter was revealed by qPCR, which showed high amounts of IFNβ and IL-10 without TNFα expression, providing biological evidence for their consumption. Secondly, we examined the use of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) to inhibit cytokine expression in inflammatory-mediated disorders to understand their mode of action. We showed here that our proprietary inhibitors (#1 and #2) could inhibit cytokine production in response to LPS stimulation. As there are currently no approved TKIs for inflammatory disorders, our data suggest that TKIs may possibly be drug candidates for inflammatory diseases. Future studies will be aimed at identifying novel inhibitors with similar effects as our proprietary inhibitors via the screening of natural product compound libraries.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University