Prof. Mahmoud Huleihel

Prof. Mahmoud Huleihel Profile

Professor
Ph.D. 1984

Department : Faculty of Health Sciences
Shraga Segal Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Genetics
Room : 677
אשפוז פנימיות-קומה 6
Phone : 972-8-6479902
972-8-6479867
Email : mahmoudh@bgu.ac.il
Office Hours :  
cancer, natural products, leukemia, virology, molecular biology, cells

Education

  • B.Sc. 1973-1976 Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva, Israel; Department of Biology, Major: Biology and Biochemistry. M.Sc. 1976-1978 Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva, Israel, Department of Biology, Advisor: Prof. Yair Cassuto. Thesis: "Effect of physical effort on the human respiratory and circulatory systems". Ph.D. 1980-1984 Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva, Israel. Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Faculty of Health Sciences, Advisor: Prof. Mordechai Aboud. Thesis: "Effect of mouse interferon on the replication of retroviruses and their function in neoplastic processes in rat cells and on syncytium formation in mouse cells”. Post- doc. 1985-1987 National Cancer Institute, Frederick Cancer Research Facility, Frederick, Maryland 21701, USA Training Laboratory, Viral Carcinogenesis Section of Viral Pathology, Advisor: Prof. Ulf Rapp. Activation and control of expression of cellular oncogenes in human and animal tumors. Post-doc. 1987-1988 Training Laboratory, Biology, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel. Advisor: Prof. Jacob Tal. Molecular biology of densoviruses (parvoviruses).

Research Interests

  • Antiviral and anti-tumor activities of natural and synthetic products.
  • Fourrier Transform Infra Red Microscopy (FTIR microscopy), studying various pathogens and cancer cells.
  • Study of various aspects related to the activity of the human T-cell lymphotropic virus (HTLV-I) Tax gene.

Research Projects

  • Anti-viral activity of natural and modified red microalgal polysaccharide against various members of the herpes family of viruses.
  • Antiviral and anti-tumor activities of plant extracts; isolation and purification of the active components; study of their merchanism of action.
  • Anti-viral and anti-bacterial activities of propolis and his active component CAPE; study of mechanism of action.

Research Abstract

  • Studies of various aspects related to the mechanism of activity of the HTLV-I Tax oncoprotein and its interaction with various cellular transcriptional factors. In this study we are trying to elucidate Tax functions. We have generated different negative dominant Tax mutants that can abrogate various functions of the wild type Tax, such as its interference with cell DNA repair, activation of NF-kB and protection from apoptosis, which together account for its oncogenic activity. The effect of these negative transdominant mutants on the various w.t. Tax activities will be examined. We also examining the effect of propolis and caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) on Tax-mediated NF-kB activation, since this activation is one of Tax functions that account for a major part of its oncogenic effect. Propolis, a natural product produced by honeybees and based on resins collected by bees from certain trees and plants, has been used for thousands of years in folk medicine. CAPE, which is a potent inhibitor of NF-kB activation, is the most active and investigated component of propolis. 2 Antiviral and anti-cancer activity of natural and synthetic products. Between the natural products we examined sulfated polysaccharides extracted from micro-red algae which showed potent antiviral activity against various members of the herpes viruses family. In this study we were able to elucidate the anti-viral mechanism of action of these substances which seem to have a pleiotropic mode of action. Therefore, these substances appear as a very attractive option for viral therapy due to the very low possibility of developing viral mutants against them. Beside the natural products, we also investigated the anti-viral activity of synthetic products such as the anti-herpetic activity of the thymidine analog MCT, and demonstrated its potent effect against various members of the herpes viruses, which proved to be superior over the known anti-herpetic drug acyclovir. This finding provided a solid basis for developing this component as a more potent anti-herpetic drug. At present, we continues searching for natural product with antiviral or/ and anticancer activities. In collaboration with other scientists, we are screening and studying anti-viral and anti-cancer activities of natural products extracted from different parts of various plants which are known to have traditional therapeutic activities. 2 Antiviral and anti-cancer activity of natural and synthetic products. Between the natural products we examined sulfated polysaccharides extracted from micro-red algae which showed potent antiviral activity against various members of the herpes viruses family. In this study we were able to elucidate the anti-viral mechanism of action of these substances which seem to have a pleiotropic mode of action. Therefore, these substances appear as a very attractive option for viral therapy due to the very l

Major expertise and techniques in the lab

  • Cell culture.
  • Virology.
  • Molecular Biology.

Publications and funding summary / representative publications and grants

  • Shvarzbeyn J. and Huleihel M . Effect of propolis and caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) on NF k B activation by HTLV-1 Tax. Antiviral Res. 90, 108-115, 2011. 2. Abou-Kandil A., Chamias R., Huleihel M. , Godbey W.T . and Aboud M. Differential Role of PKC-Induced c-Jun in Activation of HTLV-1 Long Terminal Repeat Expression by 12- O -Tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate in Different Human T-cell Lines. Plos One 7, e29934, 2012. 3. Salman A., Shufan E., Zeiri L., Yarmolinsky L. and Huleihel M. Detection and identification of NIH and MuSV cell cultures using RAMAN spectroscopy and advanced statistical methods. BBA General Subjects 2012 (in press).

Existing collaborations

  • Dr Lea Tsror (Lahkim), Dept. of Plant Pathology, The Institute of Plant Protection, Agricultural Research Organization, Gilat Experiment Station.
  • Prof. Shaul Mordechai, Dept. of Physics, BGU.
  • Dr Ahmad Salman, Department of Physics, SCE-Sami Shamoon College of Engineering.
  • Prof. Dr. Barbara Burwinkel, Molecular Biology of Breast Cancer, Dept. of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. University of Heidelberg, Germany

Looking for expertise / project

  • Epidemiological research regarding the involvement of HTLV-1 in breast cancer.