In vitro modulation of oxidative burst via release of reactive oxygen species from immune cells by extracts of selected tropical medicinal herbs and food plants

Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of Mauritius, Reduit, Mauritius.
Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Medicine (Impact Factor: 0.93). 06/2012; 5(6):440-7. DOI: 10.1016/S1995-7645(12)60075-3
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To evaluate in vitro immunomodulating properties and potential cytotoxicity of six tropical medicinal herbs and food plants namely Antidesma madagascariense (Euphorbiaceae) (AM), Erythroxylum macrocarpum (Erythroxylaceae) (EM), Faujasiopsis flexuosa (Asteraceae) (FF), Pittosporum senacia (Pittosporaceae) (PS), Momordica charantia (Cucurbitaceae) (MC) and Ocimum tenuiflorum (Lamiaceae) (OT).
Initially, the crude water and methanol extracts were probed for their capacity to trigger immune cells' NADPH oxidase and MPO-dependent activities as measured by lucigenin- and luminol-amplified chemiluminescence, respectively; as compared to receptor-dependent (serum opsonised zymosan- OPZ) or receptor-independent phorbol myristerate acetate (PMA).
Preliminary screening on whole human blood oxidative burst activity showed significant and concentration-dependent immunomodulating properties of three plants AM, FF and OT. Further investigations of the fractions on isolated human polymorphonuclear cells (PMNs) and mice monocytes using two different pathways for activation of phagocytic oxidative burst showed that ethyl acetate fraction was the most potent extract. None of the active samples had cell-death effects on human PMNs, under the assay conditions as determined by the trypan-blue exclusion assay. Since PMA and OPZ NADPH oxidase complex is activated via different transduction pathways, these results suggest that AM, FF and OT does not affect a specific transductional pathway, but rather directly inhibit a final common biochemical target such as the NADPH oxidase enzyme and/or scavenges ROS.
Our findings suggest that some of these plants extracts/fractions were able to modulate significantly immune response of phagocytes and monocytes at different steps, emphasizing their potential as a source of new natural alternative immunomodulatory agents.

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