EBCHR is composed of a network of members that are engaged in the study of botanicals in various capacities, ranging from research at the laboratory bench to clinical trials.
Michael J. Owens, PhD. Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Our lab studies the cellular and molecular bases of complex psychiatric diseases. These include depression, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia with the ultimate goal of development of novel therapeutics and/or increasing the efficacy of current treatments. To address these issues, we use a variety of molecular, cellular, pharmacological, behavioral and imaging techniques in laboratory animals and humans. We have developed a simple blood-based ex vivo assay that can assess the total activity of small molecules and their metabolites (e.g., plant extracts) at monoaminergic transporters, targets that are well established to be involved in the treatment of mood and anxiety disorders.
Rebecca Pentz, PhD. Hematology and Oncology
Although use of botanicals and other CAM is widespread, our research has shown that patients frequently do not mention their use to their physicians, but rather expect to be asked. In addition, there is no consistent vocabulary for CAM. We would like to develop a lay language lexicon of botanicals and other CAM so that physicians can more easily probe about patient usage. We are also interested in the use of botanicals to promote health resilience.
Nabil Saba, PhD. Hematology and Medical Oncology
I am Professor of Hematology and Medical Oncology, and the director of Head and Neck Oncology at Emory University. I have a strong interest in exploring novel therapeutic approaches in head and neck and esophageal cancers. I have published extensively in the area of upper aero-digestive tumors and my published work has focused on molecular markers as predictors of outcome in these tumors. A major component of my research has focused on the area of chemoprevention of smoking related malignancies namely cancers of the upper aero-digestive tract; through the investigation of various biomarkers in pre-malignant lesions such as EGFR and COX-2 which are linked to pathologic grades of dysplasia as well as the implementation of clinical trials targeting these pathways my work has contributed to the development of novel therapeutic approaches in chemoprevention and has paved the way to the more recent focus on natural and less toxic compounds. Based on the aforementioned I am interested in exploring less toxic natural compounds in prevention of cancer.