Meet the Researcher: Nur Izzah Bungsu

In this picture, Nur Izzah Bungsu was culturing peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) obtained from a healthy blood donor. PBMCs contain heterogenous immune cells including lymphocytes that were used as a study model in this project.

Nur Izzah, from PAPRSB Institute of Health Science, has completed her Masters in Biomedical Science in December 2021. Her research project focuses on investigating the effects of Senna alata, Dilenia suffruticosa and Vitex pinnata extracts on aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) activity in primary human T-lymphocytes under the supervision of Dr. Anne Cunningham and co-supervision of Dk. Dr. Nurolaini Kifli. Dr. Muhammad Hazim Ghani and Dr. Siti Rohaiza Ahmad were among other researchers involved in this project.

“I thought it was an interesting project that aimed to better understand the mode of actions of phytochemicals on a deeper level using molecular tools to dissect the potential mechanisms that might be involved. This was what attracted me to do this project earlier on.”

Her research aims to shed light on the effects of S. alata, D. suffruticosa and V. pinnata on AhR activity in vitro as ingesting these extracts could potentially modify immune responses and lead to the development of AhR targeted therapeutics, which ultimately may be beneficial for patients with inflammatory symptoms/diseases.
Her project findings indicate that local herbal extracts under investigation have the potential to influence AhR signaling pathway and modulate T-lymphocyte responses in vitro.

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