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Portrait of Dr Olumayokun Olajide Dr Olumayokun Olajide | 01484 472735


Dr Olajide received his Ph.D. in Pharmacology from the University of Ibadan in Nigeria where he investigated anti-inflammatory properties of natural products. He was a Humboldt Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Center for Drug Research (Pharmaceutical Biology), Department of Pharmacy, University of Munich, Germany where he studied cellular and molecular pharmacology of anti-inflammatory natural products, focusing on Nuclear Factor-kappa B (NF-κB) signalling. Part of his postdoctoral work was carried out in the Neurochemistry Research Laboratory, Department of Psychiatry, University of Freiburg Medical School where he conducted research on cellular and molecular pharmacology of anti-neuroinflammatory natural products.

Dr Olajide started his academic career as a Lecturer in Pharmacology in the Faculty of Pharmacy, Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria. He later moved to the College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Nigeria as a Lecturer in Pharmacology. Dr Olajide had a brief stint in industry where he was involved in drug development and clinical research; he helped in developing new drugs for type 2 diabetes and atopic dermatitis. Prior to moving to Huddersfield, he was Senior Lecturer in Pharmaceutical Sciences at London Metropolitan University. Dr Olajide is on the editorial board of Evidence Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine (eCAM).

Research & Scholarship

Drug Discovery for Neuroinflammation and Alzheimer’s disease: Natural Inhibitors of NF-κB and MAPK Signalling in the Microglia

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is an age-related neurodegenerative disorder characterised by progressive memory and cognitive decline. Neuroinflammation refers to inflammatory events in the CNS occurring primarily in glial cells, and studies have shown that neuroinflammation plays an important role in the pathogenesis of AD. Neuroinflammation is clinically manifested by enhanced expression of pro-inflammatory molecules like inducible NO synthase (iNOS), cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), TNF-α, and the interleukins (IL-1β, IL-6). A common link in the genesis of these molecules is signal dependent activation of pro-inflammatory transcription factor Nuclear Factor-kappa B (NF-κB). Activated NF-κB initiates transcription of these genes in response to microglial activation. Subsequent production and release of pro-inflammatory factors trigger death of adjacent neurons and loss of cognitive function. We hypothesise that pharmacological suppression of neuroinflammation would slow the progression of AD.

Research in my group therefore focuses on investigating the molecular interaction of natural products with NF-κB signal transduction pathway in the microglia.

Mechanism of Action of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) Modalities Used in Inflammatory Conditions

One of the major challenges in the therapeutic application of herbal medicine and other forms of complementary and alternative medicine is the dearth of information on their mechanism of pharmacological action. We are currently investigating cellular and molecular mechanisms of pharmacological actions of extracts and biologically active constituents from herbs used in Traditional African Medicine (TAM) and European traditional herbal medicine. Our research focuses on plants which have shown anti-inflammatory activities in animal and cellular models of metabolic syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis and cancer chemoprevention.

Publications and Other Research Outputs


Velagapudi, R., Aderogba, M. and Olajide, O. (2014) ‘Tiliroside, a dietary glycosidic flavonoid inhibits TRAF-6/NF-kB/p38-mediated neuroinflammation in activated BV2 microgliaBiochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) - General Subjects , 1840 (12), pp. 3311-3319. ISSN 03044165

Olajide, O., Kumar, A., Velagapudi, R., Okorji , U. and Fiebich, B. (2014) ‘Punicalagin inhibits neuroinflammation in LPS-activated rat primary microglia Molecular Nutrition and Food Research . ISSN 1613-4133

Okorji , U. and Olajide, O. (2014) ‘A semi-synthetic derivative of artemisinin, artesunate inhibits prostaglandin E2 production in LPS/IFN?-activated BV2 microgliaBioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry , 22 (17), pp. 4726-4734. ISSN 0968-0896

Velagapudi, R., Olajide, O. and Aderogba, M. (2014) ‘Tiliroside Produced Anti-Neuroinflammatory Effects Through Interference With NF-?B And MAPK Signalling In LPS+ IFN-? Stimulated BV-2 Microglia.pA2 Online . ISSN 1741-1149

Olajide, O., Velagapudi, R., Okorji , U., Sarker, S. and Fiebich, B. (2014) ‘Picralima nitida seeds suppress PGE2 production by interfering with multiple signalling pathways in IL 1?-stimulated SK-N-SH neuronal cellsJournal of ethnopharmacology , 152 (2), pp. 377-383. ISSN 0378-8741

Olajide, O. and Wright, C. (2014) ‘Cryptolepine induced apoptosis in TNFalpha-stimulated A549 lung carcinoma cells through NF-kappaB signalling pathwaypA2 Online . ISSN 1741-1149

Okorji , U. and Olajide, O. (2014) ‘Artesunate inhibits prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) production in LPS + IFN-? activated BV-2 microglia cellspA2 Online , 11 (3). ISSN 1741-1157


Olajide, O. and Fiebich, B. (2013) ‘Traditional African Medicine as a source of biologically active substances inhibiting neuroinflammationPlanta Medica , 79 (13), p. 1112. ISSN 0032-0943

Olajide, O., Bhatia, H., de Oliveira, A., Wright, C. and Fiebich, B. (2013) ‘Inhibition of neuroinflammation in LPS-activated microglia by cryptolepine Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine , 2013, pp. 1-10. ISSN 1741-427X

Olajide, O., Bhatia, H., Oliveira , A., Wright, C. and Fiebich, B. (2013) ‘Anti-neuroinflammatory properties of synthetic cryptolepine in human neuroblastoma cells: possible involvement of NF-kappaB and p38 MAPK inhibitionEuropean Journal of Medicinal Chemistry , 63, pp. 333-339. ISSN 0223-5234

Olajide, O., Aderogba, M. and Fiebich, B. (2013) ‘Mechanisms of Anti-inflammatory Property of Anacardium occidentale Stem Bark: Inhibition of NF-kappaB and MAPK Signaling in the MicrogliaJournal of ethnopharmacology , 145 (1), pp. 42-49. ISSN 0378-8741

Olajide, O. and Fiebich, B. (2013) ‘Pomegranate suppresses PGE2 production and COX- 2 expression in IL-1?-stimulated SK-N-SH neuronal cells: implications for Alzheimer’s disease.Planta Medica , 79, p. 1266. ISSN 0032-0943


Olajide, O., Aderogba, M., Okorji , U. and Fiebich, B. (2012) ‘Bridelia ferruginea Produces Anti-neuroinflammatory Activity through Inhibition of Nuclear Factor-kappa B and p38 MAPK SignallingEvidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine , 2012, pp. 1-8. ISSN 1741-427X

Olajide, O (2012) ‘Anti-neuroinflammatory and Anti-amyloidogenic Properties of Punicalagin in LPS-Activated Rat Primary Microglia’. In: BPS Winter Meeting, 18th - 20th December 2012, London, UK


Olajide, O., Pinheiro de Oliveira, A., Unekwe, J., Wright, C. and Fiebich, B. (2010) ‘Cryptolepis sanguinolenta (Lindl.) Schltr. root extract inhibits prostaglandin production in IL-1b stimulated SK-N-SH neuronal cellsPlanta Medica , 76 (12), p. 601. ISSN 0032-0943


Olajide, O., Ajayi, A. and Wright, C. (2009) ‘Anti-inflammatory properties of cryptolepine.Phytotherapy research , 23 (10), pp. 1421-1425. ISSN 1099-1573

Olajide, O (2009) ‘Inhibitory Effects of St. John's Wort on Inflammation: Ignored Potential of a Popular HerbJournal of Dietary Supplements , 6 (1), pp. 28-32. ISSN 1939-0211


Awe, E., Adeloye, A., Idowu, T., Olajide, O. and Makinde, J. (2008) ‘Antinociceptive effect of Russelia equisetiformis leave extracts: Identification of its active constituents Phytomedicine , 15 (4), pp. 301-305. ISSN 0944-7113

Bhatia, H., Candelario-Jalil, E., de Oliveira, A., Olajide, O., Martínez-Sánchez, G. and Fiebich, B. (2008) ‘Mangiferin inhibits cyclooxygenase-2 expression and prostaglandin E2 production in activated rat microglial cells.Archives of biochemistry and biophysics , 477 (2), pp. 253-258. ISSN 1096-0384


Olajide, O., Wright, C. and Fiebich, B. (2007) ‘Effects of Cryptolepis sanguinoleta root extract in lipopolysaccharide – stimulated human primary monocytesPlanta Medica , 73 (09), p. 077. ISSN 0032-0943

Olajide, O., Heiss, E., Schachner, D., Wright, C., Vollmar, A. and Dirsch, V. (2007) ‘Synthetic cryptolepine inhibits DNA binding of NF-kappaB.Bioorganic & medicinal chemistry , 15 (1), pp. 43-49. ISSN 0968-0896


Olajide, O., Ogunleye, B. and Erinle, T. (2004) ‘Anti-inflammatory properties of Amaranthus Spinosus Leaf ExtractPharmaceutical Biology , 42 (7), pp. 521-525. ISSN 1388-0209

Awe, E., Makinde, J., Olajide, O. and Wakeel, O. (2004) ‘Evaluation of the anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties of the extract of Russelia equisetiformis (Schlecht & Cham) Scrophulariacae.Inflammopharmacology , 12 (4), pp. 399-405. ISSN 0925-4692

Olajide, O., Aderogba, M., Adedapo, A. and Makinde, J. (2004) ‘Effects of Anacardium occidentale stem bark extract on in vivo inflammatory models.Journal of ethnopharmacology , 95 (2-3), pp. 139-42. ISSN 0378-8741

Olajide, O., Echianu, C., Adedapo, A. and Makinde, J. (2004) ‘Anti-inflammatory studies on Adenanthera pavonina seed extract.Inflammopharmacology , 12 (2), pp. 196-202. ISSN 0925-4692


Olajide, O., Okpako, D. and Makinde, J. (2003) ‘Anti-inflammatory properties of Bridelia ferruginea stem bark. Inhibition of lipopolysaccaride-induced septic shock and vascular permeability.Journal of ethnopharmacology , 88 (2-3), pp. 221-224. ISSN 0378-8741

Olajide, O., Makinde, J. and Okpako, D. (2003) ‘Evaluation of the anti-inflammatory property of the extract of Combretum micranthum G. Don (Combretaceae).Inflammopharmacology , 11 (3), pp. 293-298. ISSN 0925-4692


Morebise, O., Fafunso, M., Makinde, J., Olajide, O. and Awe, E. (2002) ‘Antiinflammatory property of the leaves of Gongronema latifolium.Phytotherapy research : PTR , 16 (S1), pp. 75-77. ISSN 0951-418X


Morebise, O., Awe, E., Makinde, J. and Olajide, O. (2001) ‘Evaluation of the anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties of Chasmanthera dependens leaf methanol extract.Fitoterapia , 72 (5), pp. 497-502. ISSN 0367-326X

Olajide, O. and Alada, A. (2001) ‘Studies on the anti-inflammatory properties of Entada abyssinica.Fitoterapia , 72 (5), pp. 492-496. ISSN 0367-326X


Olajide, O., Makinde, J., Okpako, D. and Awe, S. (2000) ‘Studies on the anti-inflammatory and related pharmacological properties of the aqueous extract of Bridelia ferruginea stem bark.Journal of ethnopharmacology , 71 (1-2), pp. 153-60. ISSN 0378-8741

Olajide, O., Awe, S., Makinde, J., Ekhelar, A., Olusola, A., Morebise, O. and Okpako, D. (2000) ‘Studies on the anti-inflammatory, antipyretic and analgesic properties of Alstonia boonei stem bark.Journal of ethnopharmacology , 71 (1-2), pp. 179-186. ISSN 0378-8741


Olajide, O., Awe, S., Makinde, J. and Morebise, O. (1999) ‘Evaluation of the anti-diabetic property of Morinda lucida leaves in streptozotocin-diabetic rats.The Journal of pharmacy and pharmacology , 51 (11), pp. 1321-1324. ISSN 0022-3573

Olajide, O., Makinde, J. and Awe, S. (1999) ‘Effects of the aqueous extract of Bridelia ferruginea stem bark on carrageenan-induced oedema and granuloma tissue formation in rats and mice.Journal of ethnopharmacology , 66 (1), pp. 113-117. ISSN 0378-8741

Olajide, O (1999) ‘Investigation of the effects of selected medicinal plants on experimental thrombosis.Phytotherapy research , 13 (3), pp. 231-2. ISSN 1099-1573

Research Degree Supervision

  1. Natural products targeting microglial NF-κB and p38 MAPK signalling, as well as Akt/GSK-3β activity in LPS-activated microglia: This research focuses on investigating how natural products interfere with principal intracellular signalling pathways which control microglial activation.
  2. Pomegranate/punicalagin for Alzheimer’s disease: We have shown that freeze-dried pomegranate juice extract and punicalagin suppress neuroinflammation. We are interested in understanding whether these substances are able to prevent amyloidogenesis and neuronal death.
  3. Artemisinin for Alzheimer’s disease: We are currently carrying out studies to better understand how artemisinin and one of its derivatives influence neuroinflammation and amyloidogenesis.
  4. Does cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1) mediate LPS-induced microglial activation and neuroinflammation? Implications for Alzheimer’s disease Prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) has been shown as one of the important mediators of neuroinflammation in the microglia. PGE2 production in cells is mediated by the cyclooxygenase (COX) enzyme. Two COX isoforms are known: COX-1, constitutively expressed in most tissues, classically considered to be the isoform primarily responsible for maintaining the homeostasis by mediating physiological responses, and COX-2, the inducible form, mainly activated in response to inflammatory stimuli. For several years, it was believed that COX-2, but not COX-1 was directly implicated in the inflammatory process. This led to the development of the selective COX-2 inhibitors (the coxibs) to treat inflammatory disorders. Recently, COX-1 emerged as a prominent player in CNS neuroinflammation. This project will evaluate the effects of natural compounds and known COX-1 inhibitors on neuroinflammation in LPS-activated microglial cells.
Last updated Thursday 6 March 2014
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