Research conducted by the funded centers will explore the safety, effectiveness, and mechanisms of botanicals, which are plant-based dietary supplements.
The Wake Forest center is a partnership with Harvard Medical Center and will be known as the Wake Forest and Harvard Center for Botanical Lipids. The center will examine biological mechanisms and clinical applications of polyunsaturated fatty acids derived from plants such as flaxseed, echium, also known as blueweed, and borage, an herb.
The studies will focus on the anti-inflammatory actions of these oils and their potential to prevent and treat inflammatory diseases, such as atherosclerosis and asthma. It is estimated that within the next two decades, more than one in three people in the United States will suffer from an inflammatory disease.
Floyd "Ski" Chilton, Ph.D., professor of physiology and pharmacology at Wake Forest University School of Medicine, will be the center director, overseeing four major projects of the center as well as directing educational and community outreach in the area of complementary and alternative medicine. Three major projects will be carried out at Wake Forest and one at Brigham and Women's Hospital of Harvard Medical Center.
At Wake Forest, one project will examine how flaxseed oil may protect against atherosclerosis, the buildup of fatty deposits in blood vessels. A second project will explore the hypothesis that a rare oil found in nature known as echium reduces atherosclerosis by lowering triglycerides. Project 3 examines how borage, mar
Contact: Karen Richardson
Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center