The use of whole blood cell cultures as a model for assessing the effects of Septilin on the immune system
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In the past three decades there has been a huge increase in the use of herbal medicine globally. The active principles of these herbal medicines are mostly unknown with supportive evidence for safety and efficacy very rare. Septilin is a phytopharmaceutical formulation which is recommended for the treatment and management of various infections. It has been claimed to have immunomodulatory actions that potentiates the body's immune response. The immunomodulatory activity of Septilin has not been well investigated via appropriate in vitro models. Therefore this study was undertaken to investigate the in vitro effects of Septilin on biomarkers of specific immune pathways by using WBC. Stimulated and unstimulated WBC were incubated with the product. Enzyme linked immunosorbent assays were used to screen for IL-6, IL-10, and IFN? as biomarkers for inflammation, humoral immunity, and cell mediated immunity, respectively. Results show that the presence of Septilin in LPS stimulated WBC has no effect on the release of IL-6 and IFN? production but stimulated IL-10 production. Septilin in unstimulated WBC has no effect on the release of IL-10 and IFN? production but stimulatory effects on IL-6 production. This study also assessed the effects of Artemisia afra, Aspalathus linearis (rooibos), and Septilin on inflammatory biomarkers namely, IL-6 and nitric oxide (NO) using RAW 264.7 cells, a murine macrophage cell line. The results of this study indicate that Artemisia afra has anti-inflammatory effects while Aspalathus linearis (rooibos) up regulated the immune system. The study also shows that Septilin has no immunomodulatory effects on RAW 264.7 cells.