Russians work to obtain new immunomodulating drug from flower
13 Jun '17
Scientists at the Tomsk Polytechnic University (TPU) in Siberia and their international colleagues are tapping for new drug development the healing biological powers of a plant called Ferula which is widespread in Kazakhstan, a large country in Central Asia with a predominantly steppe-type landscape, a southern neighbor of Russia’s Siberia.
Ferula iliensis, or rather essential oil extracts from this flower, have been used traditionally in Kazakhstan by popular healers for treatment of inflammations, infections and other illnesses. In this project, the researchers have looked deep into the useful properties of the oil extracts and found out that what makes the plant so curative is a special isomer, which the TPU-led team is now getting ready to synthesize in a lab to develop what appears to be a brand new immunomodulating drug candidate.
“Now, knowing an active component of Ferula, we know how to extract it through selective synthesis in laboratory conditions, not directly out of plants. Currently, we are working on obtaining a synthetic cis-isomer of sec-Butyl propylene disulfide. If we discover a convenient method to synthesize this compound, we’ll be able to obtain a new immunomodulating medicine against viruses and inflammatory diseases,” the TPU website quoted Prof. Andrey Khlebnikov of TPU’s biotech and organic chemistry chair as saying.