Examination of immunological effects of natural products such as porcupine dates extracts (PE) and edible bird’s nest extract (EBN)
Sze, Lynette Shi Jie
Date of Issue2016
School of Biological Sciences
A*STAR Bioprocessing Technology Institute
Natural products such as porcupine date extracts (PE) and edible bird’s nest (EBN) are believed to have tremendous health benefits that could prevent or even treat illnesses. Hence, with rising rates of diseases, more people are consuming these natural products despite their lack of scientific evidences. Here, as part of a collaborative biotechnology industry project, we aim to investigate the antiproliferative properties of various formulations of PE (A-D) by conducting a proliferative assay on lung cancer cells and normal mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) over a 4-week period. We will also study the immunogenic effects of a concoction of EBN with proprietary herb that may confer anti-dengue properties (DVEBN), based on the cytokine induction profile and expression pathway in macrophages and splenocytes via qPCR, RT-PCR and western blot analysis. Our results showed that all but PE B can inhibit lung cancer cells proliferation while not affecting normal cells. We also demonstrated that DVEBN can produce antiviral and anti-inflammatory cytokines and has the ability to inhibit dengue virus replication in macrophages. DVEBN elicits IFNβ expression in both macrophages and splenocytes and we further show that this requires IRF3 activation.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University