The Herbal Research Group organized its Third Herbal Research Seminar Series 2021 on the 8th of September 2021, which was held online via Zoom. The invited speaker, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Anne Cunningham, presented an enlightening lecture on “Aryl hydrocarbon receptor activation by local herbal plants: evaluation of the effects on primary human lymphocytes”. A total of 53 participants attended the seminar including staff and students from UBD, IBTE, UNISSA, Forestry Department, and International Islamic University Malaysia.
During the seminar, Dr. Anne provided insights on the role and functions of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) and how it could potentially be manipulated to regulate biological processes such as immune responses to specific diseases. She then shared some interesting findings from the research work conducted by her team, whereby aqueous and ethanol extracts of several local medicinal plants showed promising effects as AhR ligands or agonists that could induce significant AhR nuclear translocation and upregulation of specific cytokines in cultured Treg cells (regulatory T lymphocyte that suppresses immune response). She revealed that more research is underway. Nevertheless, the present results highlighted the importance of plants in our diet to maintain a healthy immune system.
The seminar was followed by a quick question and answer session where the audience addressed some of their queries and concerns regarding the presented topic where Dr. Anne responded with her personal views and opinions. To end the seminar series, the speakers, organizers, and participants were requested to turn on their cameras for a brief photo session.
For the video recording of the 3rd Herbal Research Seminar Series 2021, please see below: