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Life Sciences

Use of zebrafish system to test the biological activities present in traditional Chinese medicine

The research project is under the co-supervision of
CHEN Xiaoyong (Biology, ECNU) &Vincent LAUDET (Biology, ENS de Lyon)
xychen@des.ecnu.edu.cn               vincent.laudet@ens-lyon.fr

Traditional Chinese medicines (TCMs) are essential components of alternative medicines. Results have suggested that treatment containing multiple drugs to cure diseases like cancer or metabolic syndrome can amplify the therapeutic efficacies of each agent, leading to maximal therapeutic efficacy. Interestingly this combination therapy is often the principle used by TCMs. However, as the use of TCMs has often been associated with adverse effects, it is important to identify the essential compounds and the precise mechanisms of action of TCMs thus to allow their modernization.

IN ZEBRACHINA we propose to use an original approach to objectively quantify the biological effects of TCMs. For this we will use the zebrafish which is an ideal biological screening model that allow to screen the effects of complex mixtures and allow to perform a medium-throughput screen that could permit the identification of specific active compounds.

This project is specially relevant in the context of Franco-Chinese cooperation. Indeed the Chinese partner will allow a unique access to standardized TCM formulae that can be tested, something very difficult to access for a French laboratory. In addition, the French partner will allow the Chinese laboratory to have access to a powerful model system for biological effects and toxicity testing. The added value for the two partners is thus obvious and it is easy to anticipate that this project will give rise to a long-term fruitful collaboration between the two group with putative developments in both basic and applied science.

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