Skip to main content

The Immunomodulatory Activity of Some Maltese Medicinal Plants: Tradition, Science and Future Prospects | Chapter 5 | Trends in Pharmaceutical Research and Development Vol. 1

Aims: To review previous studies conducted on some Maltese medicinal plants for their immunomodulatory effects on lymphocytes. Methodology: Human peripheral lymphocytes were obtained from the whole blood of human healthy volunteers. Several extracts were obtained from Olea europea L., Ephedra fragilis Desf., Aster squamatus (Sprengel) Hieron., Glebionis coronaria (L.) Tzvelev, Calendula arvensis L., Carlina involucrata Poir., Dittrichia viscosa (L.) Greuter, Galactites tomentosa Moench, Inula crithmoides L., Leontodon tuberosus L., Reichardia picroides (L.) Roth, Sonchus oleraceus L. and Ecballium elaterium (L.) A. Rich. These extracts, pure metabolites and phytohaemagglutinin were tested on both resting and stimulated lymphocytes. The blastogenic transformation was monitored by morphological observations and biochemical tests using the WST-1 tetrazolium reagent and the LDH cytotoxicity assay. Results: This current study collates all previous studies. Most of the extracts tested exhibited lymphocyte activation, with the blastogenic transformation. Some extracts exhibited comparable activity to that of PHA. Metabolites showing such effects include oleuropein, ephedrine, cucurbitacin E and flavonoids. Extensive research on cucurbitacin E reveals that, in lymphocyte-cancer cell cocultures, this metabolite induces lymphocyte activation, which in turn provokes cytotoxic effect on cancer cells. Conclusion: The effects of extracts on the lymphocytes was exhibited by several extracts. In the case of oleuropein, ephedrine and cucurbitacin E, the relationship between structure and function can be deduced. However, the extracts from the Asteraceae family contained flavonoids, but no further chemical characterization was carried out. This review recommends further chemical characterization of the extracts and in depth analysis of the mechanisms for lymphocyte activation by plant metabolites. On the other hand, this study shows the potential use of these extracts to boost the immune system, alongside chemotherapeutic agents.

Author(s) Details

Ms. Tamara Attard

Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, University of Malta, Msida, MSD 2080, Malta.

Prof. Everaldo Attard
Division of Rural Sciences and Food Systems, Institute of Earth Systems, University of Malta, Msida, MSD 2080, Malta.

View Book: -


Popular posts from this blog

Use of the Arrhenius Equation in Kinetic Analyses and Mathematical Modeling of Rate Data Requires the Most Precise, Even Scrupulous, Application and Term Definitions | Chapter 6 | Theory and Applications of Chemistry Vol. 2

This article presents a critical analysis of the frequent practice of using the Arrhenius equation for mathematical modeling of very many physical and chemical rate processes. This approach may also be used to characterize the controls and mechanisms of the rate processes investigated. We also discuss  the  specific  form  of  the Arrhenius-type  equation  as  a  relationship  meriting  detailed investigations. In our opinion, the use of the Arrhenius relationship often can only approximate to the behavior of such systems, exemplified by the systems discussed below, including the work of N N Semenov, A K Galwey, A G Mershanov, etc. We draw attention to "erroneous" experimental designs, including the so-called "global kinetic mechanism" and other widespread uses of theoretical models which do not necessarily represent the real situation. Such limitations in rate data analyses impact negatively throughout this branch of science. Here we attempt to question these ac

A Brief Study of Middleware Technologies: Programming Applications and Management Systems | Chapter 15 | Novel Research Aspects in Mathematical and Computer Science Vol. 1

  Many platforms, services, applications, hardware, and operating systems are connected through the middleware layer. Because the middleware layer abstracts much low-level complexity and makes applications and software systems portable, it allows disparate systems to interface and function together in harmony. Middleware technologies enable software engineers to swiftly construct software systems and applications, allowing developers to focus on more important tasks. This chapter examines several types of middleware systems and discusses middleware capabilities, middleware operation, middleware's function in cloud-based systems, and the best middleware platforms to use. Middleware systems are widely utilised and can be found in practically any software system or application. Middleware programmes provide as a link between many sorts of systems and protocols. They serve as a mechanism for various systems. To successfully exchange information, it runs on a variety of operating system

A Facility-based Assessment of Internalized Stigma among Patients with Severe Mental Illnesses in Maiduguri, North-Eastern Nigeria | Chapter 05 | Emerging Research in Medical Sciences Vol. 3

Introduction: Public stigmatization of mental illnesses might lead to the internalization of the stigma by persons with mental illness (PWMIs) which might also lead to erosion of self-esteem and negative consequences on treatment outcome. This study assessed the prevalence of internalized stigma and analyzed its socio-demographic and clinical predictors among PWMIs in a sub-Saharan African mental health facility. Methods: Patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and severe depression (n = 370) were randomly interviewed at the out-patient department of the Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Maiduguri. They completed the sociodemographic and clinical proformata, Oslo social support scale, and an adapted version of the internalized stigma of mental illness scale (ISMI). Results: A total of 83 subjects (22.5%) met the study's criterion score for high internalized stigma. The independent predictors of high internalized stigma were; poor social support (Odds ratio, OR =