Development of array-based detection system to analyze the effect of immunomodulatory food compounds on gene expression in cultured cells

The immune system plays either a causal or an etiologic role in many chronic disorders. Many components from foods, varying from vitamins and PUFAs to polysaccharides and peptides or proteins, appear to have an impact on functioning of specific compartments of the immune system. It may be anticipated, therefore, that immune functioning can be mitigated via nutritional and dietary intervention.

Aim of project:

To acquire better understanding of the immunological dimension in immune-related disorders and to develop screening tools to identify promising sources of immunomodulatory food compounds that can mitigate immune-related disorders, such as e.g. allergies.


Gene expression and cytokine production profile in model human monocytes and macrophages , THP-1 and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) will be studied after they have been stimulated with immunomodulators including food components. Several gene types will be investigated, for instance, pro- and anti-inflammatory genes, inflammation genes, phacocytosis genes, transcription factor genes will be investigated in transcriptomic analysis. An additional dimension in the project will be the establishment of dose-response analysis and the use of in vitro assay analysis, coupled to gene expression kinetics, to come to reliable interpretation of pre-screening results. Structure-activity relationship between immunomodulating food compounds and their effects on immune system will be identified.