Semaphorins are a class of membrane-bound and secreted proteins. They have been found to regulate basic cell functions such as axonal growth cone guidance and recent studies have focused on their effect on tumor progression. Semaphorin 3B (Sema3B) particularly is a secreted protein that has been known to modulate proliferation and apoptosis, processes that are critical for tumor progression and development. In spite of its importance, there is yet no high-throughput screening assay available to detect or quantify the expression of Sema3B for natural product anticancer drug discovery purposes. Therefore, the development of a new high-throughput bioassay for the discovery of Sema3B inducing agents from natural product sources is described herein. A wide variety of pure compounds and extracts from plants and microorganisms has been found suitable for screening using this Sema3B assay to detect and quantify the effect of Sema3B inducing agents and thereby identify new selective bioactive Sema3B lead compounds for anticancer drug discovery and development. Also, this new bioassay procedure is based on a high-throughput platform using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay that involves the optimization of sensitivity and selectivity levels as well as accuracy, reproducibility, robustness, and cost effectiveness.
Keywords: Anticancer; ELISA; Natural products; Semaphorin.
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