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MAJOR RESEARCH PROJECT AREAS


Targeting inflammatory cytokines and adhesion molecules. During the past sixten  years, Dr Habtemariam has developed several in vitro bioassay methods for screening potential antagonist of proinflammatory cytokines (e.g. TNF), cell adhesion molecule (integrins & immunoglobulins), endotoxin, etc. By using these bioassays, he has  identified several promising natural small molecular weight  antiinflammartory agents [see under publications]. His expertise in this area include measurements of inflammatory cytokines release, cytokines mediated apoptosis/proliferation, inhibitors of adhesion molecules expression/activation and cell-cell and cell-protein adhesion.

Search for anti-microbial agents. An in vitro assay model for routine screening of  drugs against the mammalian stage of leishmania (protozoa) parasites has  been developed and some promising compounds have  already been identified. We are currently testing natural products for antiviral activities - particularly anti-HSV-1 and anti-HSV-2 effects. Drugs are also routinely screened for their effects on bacteria, yeast and fungi. The  agar-disc diffusion method and MIC measurements are routinely used for these studies  [see under publications].

In vitro anticancer and immunomodulatory activity evaluations. Dr Habtemariam has  over ten years of experience in the use of  primary cultures and established cell lines for anticancer activity studies. The cytotoxic/cytostatic effects of drugs together with assessment of apoptosis (programmed cell death) events are routinely measured [see under publications].

Purification/isolation and spectroscopic analysis of drug candidates. Following the bioassay of crude drugs (herbal drugs, snake venom or synthetic mixtures), various chromatographic (TLC, LP- and HPLC, etc.) techniques are used to isolate active principles. The identity of active principles are characterised by spectroscopic techniques such as IR, UV, MS and 1D and 2D-NMR spectroscopy [see under publications].

Reactive Oxygen Species in Health and Disease - WE ARE CURRENTLY STUDYING THE ANTIOXIDANT, PROOXIDANT AND CHEMO/CYTOPROTECTIVE PROPERTIES OF MEDICINAL PLANTS AND THEIR METABOLITES USING VARIOUS IN-HOUSE CHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL ASSAY SYSTEMS. WE ARE PARTICULARLY INTERESTED IN ASSESSING THE NEUROPROTECTIVE EFFECTS OF NATURAL PRODUCTS  [see under publications].

Enzyme inhibition studies - We have recently incorporated enzyme inhibition studies in our bioassay screens for disease models including Alzheimer's, diabetes and inflammatory conditions.

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The Site Owner

Dr Habtemariam BSc, MSc, PhD........FRSM, FRSC. .... With a Principal Lecturer post at Greenwich, Dr Habtemariam is a leader of the BSc Pharmaceutical Science programme and researches on bioassay & natural products-based drug development. ....More

 

Facilities

In addition to our fully equipped tissue culture facilities, we have  access to various state-of-the-art equipment including ICP-MS, LC-MS, MALDI-TOF-MS, FABS-MS, FTIR, Laser-Raman,  scanning  and transmission  electron microscopes, flow cytometer, NMR (270, 300 and 500MHz),  automated DNA sequencers, various HPLC systems,  capillary electrophersis and ABI PRCmate DNA synthetisers.

Chromatography

Spectroscopy

Bioassays

Antimicarobial

Anticancer

Antiinflammatory

Antioxidant 

Antidiabetic

Neuroprotective

Plant Medicine

Pharmacognosy

Phytochemistry

Essential Oils

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Education & Training
Lectures, seminars,  workshops & short courses; undergraduate, postgraduate &  postdoctoral level education and trainings ... on pharmacology &  pharmacognosy subject areas
 

Modernising the old art of traditional medicines can only happen through up-to-date scientific research

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