Estrogenic and Anti-estrogenic Activities of Texas Prickly Ash, Zanthoxylum hirsutum (Zanthoxylum)
Many species of Zanthoxylum are used as medicinal plants. Texas Prickly Ash, Z. hirsutum is a native tree/shrub to Southern USA, which has not been studied before. The aim of this project is to evaluate the estrogenic and antiestrogenic activities of Z. hirsutum extracts. Tree Branches were collected from the Bettye Myers Butterfly Garden and tissues were extracted in 80% ethanol. The estrogen equivalents in extracts were estimated based on an estradiol standard curve. To test the hypothesis that Z. hirsutum exhibits estrogenic activity, increasing amounts of plant extracts will be inoculated into Saccharomyces cerevisiae expressing the human estrogen receptor and betagalactosidase assays will be performed. To test the hypothesis that extract possesses antiestrogenic activity, extract along with estradiol will be inoculated in yeast cultures and the inhibition of 17 beta-estradiol activity will prove the antiestrogenic activity of the Z. hirsutum extract. Future research will focus on the identification of Z. hirsutum phytochemicals with estrogenic and antiestrogenic activities.
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