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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 3 (2006), Issue 1, Pages 65-70
Original Article

The Use of Gene Expression Analysis and Proteomic Databases in The Development of a Screening System To Determine The Value of Natural Medicinal Products

1Division of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of British Columbia Vancouver, V6T 1Z3, Canada
2Department of Zoology, University of British Columbia Vancouver, V6T 1Z3, Canada

Received 15 June 2005

Copyright © 2006 Sidney Katz et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A rapid throughput screening system involving gene expression analysis was developed in order to investigate the potential of bioactive chemicals contained in natural health products as effective drug therapy, in particular the ability of these chemicals to alleviate the inflammatory response in human airway epithelial cells. A number of databases were searched to retrieve the information needed to properly analyze the gene expression profiles obtained. The gene expression of human bronchial epithelial cells infected with rhinovirus and/or exposed to platelet activating factor was analyzed. Following analysis of the gene expression data the total number of expressed proteins that may potentially act as a marker for monitoring the modulation of airway inflammation was narrowed to 19. Further studies will involve selecting antibodies for these proteins, culturing airway epithelial cells in the presence of extracts of natural health products, extracting the proteins and identifying them by western blot analysis.