Determination of the mechanism of action to botanicals and natural products (mixtures and pure compounds) is often rate limiting for the safe and efficacious use as supplements and therapeutics. Botanicals and dietary supplements are particularly difficult, as these are often complex mixtures that can change in the constituents and concentration of individual compounds. The rapidly growing botanical dietary supplement industry faces a number of challenges regarding the quality, safety and benefit of these products. In order to address these issues, rigorous and sustained efforts are needed to chemically and biologically characterize these products.
The Center will leverage technology platforms developed at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and the University of California, Santa Cruz to study the mechanism of action of botanicals and natural products. The end goal is to provide a series of data-driven resources with web-based interfaces for the scientific community to probe the function of natural product and botanicals.