Many herbs and spices are known to modulate the immune system and have been shown to restore the immunity in immuno-compromised individuals. Spices generally used to increase the taste and flavor of food also has the history of usage as an ayurvedic medicine. Therefore to explore the health modulating effects of Cuminum cyminum and to identify the active compound, immunomodulatory properties were evaluated using flowcytometry and ELISA in normal and immune-suppressed animals. C. cyminum and compound 1 stimulated the T cells and Th1 cytokines expression in normal animals. Swiss albino mice subjected to Cyclosporine-A induced immune-suppression were dosed orally with C. cyminum (25, 50, 100 and 200 mg/kg) on consecutive days. The results showed that administration significantly increased T cells (CD4 and CD8) count and Th1 predominant immune response in a dose dependent manner thereby suggesting immunomodulatory activity through modulation of T lymphocytes expression. In restraint stress induced immune-suppressed animals, compound 1 countered the depleted T lymphocytes, decreased the elevated corticosterone levels and size of adrenal glands and increased the weight of thymus and spleen. Based on the data we may conclude that C. cyminum is a potent immunomodulator and may develop as a lead to recover the immunity of immuno-compromised individuals.
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