Navigation Links
South African daffodils may be a future cure for depression

Scientists at the University of Copenhagen have previously documented that substances from the South African plant species Crinum and Cyrtanthus akin to snowdrops and daffodils have an effect on the mechanisms in the brain that are involved in depression. This research has now yielded further results, since a team based at the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences has recently shown how several South African daffodils contain plant compounds whose characteristics enable them to negotiate the defensive blood-brain barrier that is a key challenge in all new drug development.

"Several of our plant compounds can probably be smuggled past the brain's effective barrier proteins. We examined various compounds for their influence on the transporter proteins in the brain. This study was made in a genetically-modified cell model of the blood-brain barrier that contains high levels of the transporter P-glycoprotein. Our results are promising, and several of the chemical compounds studied should therefore be tested further, as candidates for long-term drug development," says Associate Professor Birger Brodin.

"The biggest challenge in medical treatment of diseases of the brain is that the drug cannot pass through the blood-brain barrier. The blood vessels of the brain are impenetrable for most compounds, one reason being the very active transporter proteins. You could say that the proteins pump the drugs out of the cells just as quickly as they are pumped in. So it is of great interest to find compounds that manage to 'trick' this line of defence."

The results of the study have been published in the Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology.

New cooperation between biologists and organic chemists

It will nonetheless be a long time before any possible new drug reaches our pharmacy shelves:

"This is the first stage of a lengthy process, so it will take some time before we can determine which of the plant compounds can be used in further drug development," says Birger Brodin.

Yet this does not curb his enthusiasm for the opportunities from the interdisciplinary cooperation with organic scientists from the Department of Drug Design and Pharmacology and the Natural History Museum of Denmark.

"In my research group, we have had a long-term focus on the body's barrier tissue and in recent years particularly the transport of drug compounds across the blood-brain barrier. More than 90 per cent of all potential drugs fail the test by not making it through the barrier, or being pumped out as soon as they do get in. Studies of natural therapies are a valuable source of inspiration, giving us knowledge that can also be used in other contexts," Birger Brodin emphasises.

Contact: Associate Professor Birger Brodin
University of Copenhagen

Related biology news :

1. Mesquite trees displacing Southwestern grasslands
2. FirstMark Announces New Hire Jay Houtman as Southeast Regional Sales Manager
3. Southampton researchers lead 2 international projects to help people out of poverty
4. Bark beetle management and ecology in southern pine forests
5. Beetle-fungus disease threatens crops and landscape trees in Southern California
6. Latest Southern Ocean research shows continuing deep ocean change
7. Herbivores select on floral architecture in a South African bird-pollinated plant
8. CU-Boulder-led team finds microbes in extreme environment on South American volcanoes
9. UNH researchers find African farmers need better climate change data to improve farming practices
10. Treatment to benefit African infants at risk of endemic fever
11. African scientist, designer partner to fashion anti-malaria garment that wards off bugs
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
South African daffodils may be a future cure for depression
(Date:6/2/2016)... 2, 2016 The Department of Transport ... the 44 million US Dollar project, for the , ... including Personalization, Enrolment, and IT Infrastructure , to ... production and implementation of Identity Management Solutions. Numerous renowned international ... Decatur was selected for the most compliant ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... 2, 2016 Perimeter Surveillance & ... Systems, Physical Infrastructure, Support & Other Service  ... offers comprehensive analysis of the global Border ... generate revenues of $17.98 billion in 2016. ... a leader in software and hardware technologies for advanced ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... Ampronix facilitates superior patient care by providing unparalleled technology to leaders of ... the latest premium product recently added to the range of products distributed by Ampronix. ... ... ... Medical Display- Ampronix News ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... WI (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... focused on quality, regulatory and technical consulting, provides a free webinar ... presented on July 13, 2016 at 12pm CT at no charge. , Incomplete ...
(Date:6/23/2016)...  Amgen (NASDAQ: AMGN ) today announced ... life sciences incubator to accelerate the development of new ... at QB3@953 was created to help high-potential life science ... early stage organizations - access to laboratory infrastructure. ... two "Amgen Golden Ticket" awards, providing each winner with ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... DIEGO , June 22, 2016 ... that will allow them to produce up to ... from one lot within one week. These high-quality, ... time laboriously preparing cells and spend more time ... possible through a proprietary, high-volume manufacturing process that ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... NEW YORK , June 22, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... the growing next generation sequencing (NGS) market include ... adoption of smaller sequencers.  More accessible and affordable ... led to growing demand for consumables including sample ... The Market for Sample Preparation for Next ...
Breaking Biology Technology: