Barbara Schmidt

Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick, NJ, United States

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Publications (6)14.18 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Brassinosteroids are plant growth hormones involved in cell growth, division, and differentiation. Their effects in animals are largely unknown, although recent studies showed that the anabolic properties of brassinosteroids are possibly mediated through the phosphoinositide 3-kinase/protein kinase B signaling pathway. Here, we examined biological activity of homobrassinolide (HB) and its synthetic analogues in in vitro proliferation and migration assays in murine fibroblast and primary keratinocyte cell culture. HB stimulated fibroblast proliferation and migration and weakly induced keratinocyte proliferation in vitro. The effects of topical HB administration on progression of wound closure were further tested in the mouse model of cutaneous wound healing. C57BL/6J mice were given a full-thickness dermal wound, and the rate of wound closure was assessed daily for 10 days, with adenosine receptor agonist CGS-21680 as a positive control. Topical application of brassinosteroid significantly reduced wound size and accelerated wound healing in treated animals. mRNA levels of transforming growth factor beta and intercellular adhesion molecule 1 were significantly lower, while tumor necrosis factor alpha was nearly suppressed in the wounds from treated mice. Our data suggest that topical application of brassinosteroids accelerates wound healing by positively modulating inflammatory and reepithelialization phases of the wound repair process, in part by enhancing Akt signaling in the skin at the edges of the wound and enhancing migration of fibroblasts in the wounded area. Targeting this signaling pathway with brassinosteroids may represent a promising approach to the therapy of delayed wound healing.
    Wound Repair and Regeneration 08/2013; · 2.76 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cell migration, angiogenesis, inflammation, and extracellular matrix remodeling are key events in wound healing. Natural products, including fatty acids (FAs), can accelerate wound healing by modulating the aforementioned events. 
 This study aims to evaluate the effect of lucuma (Pouteria lucuma O Kezte) nut oil (LNO) on fibroblasts migration, angiogenesis, inflammation, bacterial and fungal growth, and wound healing. Methods  GC-MS analysis of FAs methyl esters (FAMES) was used for chemical characterization of LNO. In vitro studies were carried out with LNO investigating the induction of cell migration, cytoskeleton remodeling of human fibroblasts, inhibition of LPS-induced nitric oxide production in macrophages, and antibacterial and antifungal effects. Two in vivo studies were carried out to study LNO's effect on angiogenesis and wound healing: (i) tail fin regeneration in transgenic zebrafish larvae expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) in vascular endothelial cells was used to study vessel sprouting and wound healing and (ii) the closure of wounds was evaluated in CD-1 mice after topical applications of LNO-containing formulations. Lucuma nut oil is a mixture of FAs, 99.7% of which were characterized. Major components of LNO (w/w) are linoleic acid (38.9%), oleic acid (27.9%), palmitic acid (18.6%), stearic acid (8.9%), and γ linolenic acid (2.9%). In vitro studies showed that LNO significantly promoted migration and vinculin expression in human fibroblasts. LNO decreased LPS-induced nitric oxide production and did not display significant antibacterial or antifungal effects. LNO induced tail fin regeneration in transgenic zebrafish larvae 48 h after tail fin amputation and significantly accelerated cutaneous wound closure in CD-1 mice. Natural FAs from P. lucuma nut promote skin regeneration and, thus, may have applications in medicine and skin care.
    Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology 09/2010; 9(3):185-95. · 0.87 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A method of preparing Pouteria lucuma extract was developed which comprises extracting oil from the nut. The lucuma nut oil (LNO) was effective to induce cell migration, enhance tissue regeneration and enhance wound healing. The lucuma nut oil provides an agent that is useful for therapeutic or cosmetic maintenance of skin and scalp.
    Ref. No: WO/2010/056908, Year: 05/2010
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    ABSTRACT: Plants have been used as a source of medicine throughout history and continue to serve as the basis for many pharmaceuticals used today. Although the modern pharmaceutical industry was born from botanical medicine, synthetic approaches to drug discovery have become standard. However, this modern approach has led to a decline in new drug development in recent years and a growing market for botanical therapeutics that are currently available as dietary supplements, drugs, or botanical drugs. Most botanical therapeutics are derived from medicinal plants that have been cultivated for increased yields of bioactive components. The phytochemical composition of many plants has changed over time, with domestication of agricultural crops resulting in the enhanced content of some bioactive compounds and diminished content of others. Plants continue to serve as a valuable source of therapeutic compounds because of their vast biosynthetic capacity. A primary advantage of botanicals is their complex composition consisting of collections of related compounds having multiple activities that interact for a greater total activity.
    Metabolism 07/2008; 57(7 Suppl 1):S3-9. · 3.10 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Botanical preparations have been used medicinally for thousands of years. Many commercially available botanical products are being marketed in the United States with little or no publicly available scientific validation of efficacy or consistency. For botanicals to be reliable for research purposes and consumer products, they must be standardized with sufficient quality controls to ensure consistent composition, safety, and potency. This includes uniform cultivation of source plants with controls to monitor for contamination from other species, pesticides, and environmental toxins. The active components of botanicals must be identified by activity-guided fractionation with the use of in vitro assays that require little test material followed by validation in vivo. Concentrations of active compounds within the botanicals can then be accurately measured to ensure the delivery of a dependable dose in the final product. The use of bioenhancing agents may be considered for compounds with poor bioavailability. Standardization of botanical therapeutics can only be achieved when the active compounds are identified and biological activity is confirmed, thus ensuring a consistent product.
    American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 03/2008; 87(2):472S-5S. · 6.50 Impact Factor
  • Natural product communications 01/2007; 2(7):717-722. · 0.96 Impact Factor