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      Study on the Immunomodulation Effect of Isodon japonicus Extract via Splenocyte Function and NK Anti-Tumor Activity

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          Here we investigated the potential immune-enhancing activity of Isodon japonicus on murine splenocyte and natural-killer (NK) cells in vitro. The ethanol extract of I. japonicus significantly enhanced the proliferation of splenocyte and induced the significant enhancement of NK cells’ activity against tumor cells (YAC-1). In addition, I. japonicus increased the production of interferon (IFN)-γ and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, suggesting that the increase in NK cell cytotoxicity could be due to the enhancement of the NK cell production of both cytokines. Taken together, I. japonicus extract inhibited the growth of human leukemia cells (K562) by 74%. Our observation indicated that the anti-tumor effects of I. japonicus may be attributed to its ability to serve as a stimulant of NK anti-tumor activity. In addition, our results support the development of functional food studies on I. japonicus.

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          Most cited references 27

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          Inflammatory responses play decisive roles at different stages of tumor development, including initiation, promotion, malignant conversion, invasion, and metastasis. Inflammation also affects immune surveillance and responses to therapy. Immune cells that infiltrate tumors engage in an extensive and dynamic crosstalk with cancer cells, and some of the molecular events that mediate this dialog have been revealed. This review outlines the principal mechanisms that govern the effects of inflammation and immunity on tumor development and discusses attractive new targets for cancer therapy and prevention. 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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            Natural killer (NK) cells are populations of lymphocytes that can be activated to mediate significant levels of cytotoxic activity and produce high levels of certain cytokines and chemokines. NK cells respond to and are important in defense against a number of different infectious agents. The first indications for this function came from the observations that virus-induced interferons alpha/beta (IFN-alpha and -beta) are potent inducers of NK cell-mediated cytotoxicity, and that NK cells are important contributors to innate defense against viral infections. In addition to IFN-alpha/beta, a wide range of other innate cytokines can mediate biological functions regulating the NK cell responses of cytotoxicity, proliferation, and gamma interferon (IFN-gamma) production. Certain, but not all, viral infections induce interleukin 12 (IL-12) to elicit NK cell IFN-gamma production and antiviral mechanisms. However, high levels of IFN-alpha/beta appear to be unique and/or uniquely dominant in the context of viral infections and act to regulate other innate responses, including induction of NK cell proliferation in vivo and overall negative regulation of IL-12 production. A detailed picture is developing of particular innate cytokines activating NK cell responses and their consorted effects in providing unique endogenous milieus promoting downstream adaptive responses, most beneficial in defense against viral infections.
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              Re-examination and further development of a precise and rapid dye method for measuring cell growth/cell kill.

              The tetrazolium salt (MTT) method involving conversion of MTT to coloured formazan by cells serving as indirect measurements of cell growth/cell kill has been reported by several groups, although technical problems have been encountered. The present investigation was undertaken in order to delineate what laboratory variables have direct influence on the sensitivity and reproducibility of the method. The pH of the extraction buffer was of the utmost importance, since it was demonstrated that a pH greater than 5 would give rise to false signals. Furthermore, modifying the composition of the extraction buffer, all formazan dye grains were solubilised, totally. A direct comparison with published methods demonstrated that only the modified method would yield 100% higher signals without increasing the background. In contrast to previous reports, it was shown that phenol red does not interfere with the measurements and no washing steps are required since all ingredients can be added subsequently. Serum proteins at concentrations up to 25% have no influence on the result. All samples can be measured in an ELISA scanner at 570 nm with little intra-assay variation.

                Author and article information

                [1 ]Department of Agrofood Resources, National Academy of Agricultural Science, RDA, Suwon 441-853, Korea; E-Mails: yujinh21@ (Y.-J.H.); kjh2002@ (J.K.); dpark@ (D.-S.P.)
                [2 ]Department of Biotechnology & Bioengineering, Sungkyunkwan University, Suwon 440-746, Korea
                Author notes
                [* ]Author to whom correspondence should be addressed; E-Mail: kah366@ ; Tel.: +82-31-299-0527; Fax: +82-31-299-0443.
                Int J Mol Sci
                Int J Mol Sci
                International Journal of Molecular Sciences
                Molecular Diversity Preservation International (MDPI)
                18 April 2012
                : 13
                : 4
                : 4880-4888
                © 2012 by the authors; licensee Molecular Diversity Preservation International, Basel, Switzerland.

                This article is an open-access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution license (


                Molecular biology

                isodon japonicus, cytokine, natural killer cell, splenocyte


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