Bioactive Compounds from Plant Origin and Therapeutic and Nutraceutical Properties for Human Health

A special issue of Foods (ISSN 2304-8158). This special issue belongs to the section "Plant Foods".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 February 2022) | Viewed by 41362

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Lisbon, 1649-003 Lisboa, Portugal
Interests: oxidative burst; systemic inflammation; antioxidant activity; pharmacology; chronic inflammation; antioxidants; phenolic compounds
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade de Lisboa—Av. Prof. Gama Pinto, 1649-003 Lisboa, Portugal
Interests: inflammatory bowel disease; arthritis; herbal medicines and functional foods; immunopharmacology and pharmacotherapy; animal models of disease; local and systemic inflammation; critical care and multi-organ dysfunction syndrome; acute lung injury & acute respiratory distress syndrome; stroke & cerebral ischemia
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are glad to invite you to submit a manuscript to the Special Issue “Bioactive Compounds from Plant Origin and Therapeutic and Nutraceutical Properties for Human Health” in the open access journal Foods (https://www.mdpi.com/journal/foods/, ISSN 2304-8158). We look forward to receiving your submissions.

Herbal medicines have played an important role in the discovery of new drugs and innovative mechanisms of action, and have a long usage history as alternative treatments. Similarly, many plants are part of the diet, in functional foods, and they are important in maintaining health and wellbeing, as well as in disease prevention.

Among the various mechanisms exhibited by substances originated from these sources, antioxidant effects have been one of the most studied mechanisms. Given the importance of oxidative stress and the deleterious effects of reactive oxygen species in several diseases, the study of molecules that are able to prevent or reduce the magnitude of these oxidative mediators is of great importance.

An inflammatory process, that can also be caused by oxidative stress, is also responsible for the development of many chronic diseases like diabetes, neurodegenerative diseases, stroke, and even cancer—the cellular pathways that regulate inflammatory processes have become very important in the research of many diseases.

The pleiotropic effects of substances derived from herbal and food sources and their ability to modulate several cellular, biochemical and pharmacological targets that have the ability to modulate the development of several diseases have made this line of research one of the most active in recent years. Many other parallel and related mechanism are being identified for herbal/food-derived substances and may contribute greatly to a better understanding of the pathophysiology of diseases, while elucidating new and promising pharmacological targets.

The authors of this Special Issue invite researchers to contribute original research articles as well as review articles related to the study of the beneficial effect of bioactive compounds from plant origin/food products that contribute to the knowledge in this area and may have new data regarding a potential beneficial effect, either by in vitro, in vivo or human experiments.

Prof. Dr. Maria Eduardo-Figueira
Prof. Dr. João Rocha
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • Antioxidants
  • Inflammation
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Polyphenols
  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacokinetic
  • Herbal medicines
  • Functional foods

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review

17 pages, 2206 KiB  
Article
Comprehensive Study of Traditional Plant Ground Ivy (Glechoma hederacea L.) Grown in Croatia in Terms of Nutritional and Bioactive Composition
by Danijela Šeremet, Stela Jokić, Krunoslav Aladić, Ana Butorac, Marija Lovrić, Ana Jurinjak Tušek, Marko Obranović, Ana Mandura Jarić, Aleksandra Vojvodić Cebin, Klaudija Carović-Stanko and Draženka Komes
Foods 2022, 11(5), 658; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods11050658 - 23 Feb 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2285
Abstract
In the present study, ground ivy was harvested from different natural habitats in Croatia and subjected to screening analysis for nutritional and bioactive composition. To achieve maximum recovery of phenolic compounds, different extraction techniques were investigated—heat-assisted (HAE), microwave-assisted (MAE) and subcritical water (SWE) [...] Read more.
In the present study, ground ivy was harvested from different natural habitats in Croatia and subjected to screening analysis for nutritional and bioactive composition. To achieve maximum recovery of phenolic compounds, different extraction techniques were investigated—heat-assisted (HAE), microwave-assisted (MAE) and subcritical water (SWE) extraction. Prepared extracts were analysed by spectrophotometric methods, LC-MS/MS and HPLC-PAD methodologies. Results regarding nutritive analyses, conducted using standard AOAC methods, showed the abundance of samples in terms of insoluble dietary fibre, protein, calcium and potassium, while rutin, chlorogenic, cryptochlorogenic, caffeic and rosmarinic acid were the most dominant phenolic compounds. In addition, LC-MS/MS analysis revealed the presence of apigenin and luteolin in glycosylated form. Maximum recovery of target phenolic compounds was achieved with MAE, while SWE led to the formation of new antioxidants, which is commonly known as neoformation. Moreover, efficient prediction of phenolic composition of prepared extracts was achieved using NIR spectroscopy combined with ANN modelling. Full article
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11 pages, 936 KiB  
Article
Effects of Microbial Transformation on the Biological Activities of Prenylated Chalcones from Angelica keiskei
by Yina Xiao and Ik-Soo Lee
Foods 2022, 11(4), 543; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods11040543 - 14 Feb 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1890
Abstract
Microbial transformation is an alternative method for structural modification. The current study aimed at application of microbial transformation for discovering new derivatives and investigating the structure-activity relationship of isobavachalcone (1), 4-hydroxyderricin (2), and xanthoangelol (3) isolated from [...] Read more.
Microbial transformation is an alternative method for structural modification. The current study aimed at application of microbial transformation for discovering new derivatives and investigating the structure-activity relationship of isobavachalcone (1), 4-hydroxyderricin (2), and xanthoangelol (3) isolated from the herb Angelica keiskei. In the initial screening process, 13 were incubated with microbes using a two-stage fermentation method and analyzed through TLC monitoring. The screening results showed that Rhizopus oryzae and Mucor hiemalis were able to transform 1 and 2, respectively. Additionally, M. hiemalis and Mortierella ramanniana var. angulispora were able to transform 3. Following scale-up fermentation, four new (4, 5, 7, and 10) and five known (6, 8, 9, 11, and 12) metabolites were produced. Cytotoxicity of all the compounds (112) was investigated using three human cancer cell lines including A375P, HT-29, and MCF-7 by MTT method. Meanwhile, the tyrosinase inhibitory activity of 112 was evaluated using l-tyrosine as a substrate. Overall, 1 and 3 displayed the highest cytotoxicity, and 5 and 7 exhibited the most potent tyrosinase inhibitory activity with relatively low cytotoxicity. This allowed us to postulate that the introduction of 4′-O-glucopyranosyl group led to the reduction in cytotoxicity and improvement in tyrosinase inhibitory activity. Full article
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15 pages, 749 KiB  
Article
Chemical Composition Analysis and Antioxidant Activity of Coffea robusta Monofloral Honeys from Vietnam
by Nguyen Thi Nu Trinh, Nguyen Ngoc Tuan, Tran Dinh Thang, Ping-Chung Kuo, Nguyen Ba Thanh, Le Nhat Tam, Le Hong Tuoi, Trang H. D. Nguyen, Danh C. Vu, Thi L. Ho, Le Ngoc Anh and Nguyen Thi Thu Thuy
Foods 2022, 11(3), 388; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods11030388 - 29 Jan 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 3951
Abstract
Monofloral honey samples (Coffea robusta) from Vietnam were determined for their chemical compositions. This is the first report on the chemical composition and antioxidant activity of coffee honey from Vietnam. These samples were characterized by their high contents of total and [...] Read more.
Monofloral honey samples (Coffea robusta) from Vietnam were determined for their chemical compositions. This is the first report on the chemical composition and antioxidant activity of coffee honey from Vietnam. These samples were characterized by their high contents of total and reducing sugars, total phenolic contents, and total flavonoid contents. The contents of seven phenolic acids (PAs) were quantified by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and analyzed with the assistance of principle component analysis (PCA) to differentiate the honey samples into groups. The hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) (0.048–2.933 mg/kg) and free acid contents (20.326–31.163 meq/kg) of coffee honey were lower in Nepal, which reflected the freshness of the honey when conducting this survey. The coffee honey had total sugar and reducing sugar contents 831.711 g/kg and 697.903 g/kg, respectively. The high level of total phenolic (0.642 mg GAE/g) and flavonoid (0.0341 mg GE/g) contents of coffee honey contributed to their antioxidant activity of this honey sample. Among the coffee honey tested, the IC50 of DPPH radical-scavenging activities value was 1.134–17.031 mg/mL, while the IC50 of ABTS radical-scavenging activities value was 115.381–213.769 mg/mL. The phenolic acids composition analysis displayed that gallic acid appeared in high concentrations in all studied honey samples, ranging from 0.037–1.015 mg/kg, and ferulic acid content ranged from 0.193 to 0.276 mg/kg. The content of trigonelline and caffeine in coffee honey samples ranged from 0.314–2.399 mg/kg and 8.946–37.977 mg/kg. The data in this article highlight the relevance of coffee honey as a healthy substance. Full article
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18 pages, 1460 KiB  
Article
Chemical Characterization of Coffee Husks, a By-Product of Coffea arabica Production
by Lais B. Cangussu, Jean Carlos Melo, Adriana S. Franca and Leandro S. Oliveira
Foods 2021, 10(12), 3125; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10123125 - 16 Dec 2021
Cited by 32 | Viewed by 8131
Abstract
Coffee husks are a major by-product of coffee production and are currently being underutilized. The aim of this work was to chemically characterize coffee husks to allow for an adequate evaluation of their potential for valorization. Blanched and non-blanched coffee husks were characterized [...] Read more.
Coffee husks are a major by-product of coffee production and are currently being underutilized. The aim of this work was to chemically characterize coffee husks to allow for an adequate evaluation of their potential for valorization. Blanched and non-blanched coffee husks were characterized for extractable and non-extractable phenolics, caffeine, trigonelline content, and for their polysaccharide and proximal composition. The total, soluble and insoluble fiber contents were determined, together with the husks’ technological properties. Antioxidant activity and bioaccessibility of phenolic compounds of coffee husks were evaluated. Two types of husk were studied: one comprised mostly of outer skin and pulp (CH1); and other comprised mostly of parchment (CH2). Blanching had positive effects on non-extractable phenolics, chlorogenic acid and on the bioaccessibility of phenolics, promoting small reductions in extractable phenolics, protocathecuic acid, caffeine and trigonelline contents. Blanched CH1 presented more appropriate properties than CH2 for potential applications in food. It also presented better antioxidant, hydration, and oil holding properties than those of other agri-food by-products. Tentatively identified polysaccharides included galactomannans, arabinogalactans type II, pectin and cellulose. Full article
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21 pages, 34549 KiB  
Article
Bitter Gourd Honey Ameliorates Hepatic and Renal Diabetic Complications on Type 2 Diabetes Rat Models by Antioxidant, Anti-Inflammatory, and Anti-Apoptotic Mechanisms
by Chandra Sekhar Arigela, Giribabu Nelli, Siew Hua Gan, Kuttulebbai Nainamohamed Salam Sirajudeen, Kumarathevan Krishnan, Nurhanan Abdul Rahman and Visweswara Rao Pasupuleti
Foods 2021, 10(11), 2872; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10112872 - 20 Nov 2021
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 4674
Abstract
Honey has several pharmacological effects, including anti-diabetic activity. However, the effectiveness of bitter gourd honey (BGH) in the treatment of diabetes mellitus (DM) is unknown. The aim of this study was to determine the antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-apoptotic properties of BGH on the [...] Read more.
Honey has several pharmacological effects, including anti-diabetic activity. However, the effectiveness of bitter gourd honey (BGH) in the treatment of diabetes mellitus (DM) is unknown. The aim of this study was to determine the antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-apoptotic properties of BGH on the kidney and liver of a streptozotocin-induced diabetes rat model. Methods: A single dose (nicotinamide 110 mg/kg, streptozotocin (STZ) 55 mg/kg, intraperitoneal (i.p.)) was used to induce DM in male rats. For 28 days, normal or diabetic rats were administered 1 g/kg/day and 2 g/kg/day of BGH orally. After the treatment, blood, liver, and kidney samples were collected and analysed for biochemical, histological, and molecular parameters. In addition, liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (LC-MS) was used to identify the major bioactive components in BGH. Results: The administration of BGH to diabetic rats resulted in significant reductions in alanine transaminase (ALT),aspartate aminotransferase (AST), creatinine, and urea levels. Diabetic rats treated with BGH showed lesser pathophysiological alterations in the liver and kidney as compared to non-treated control rats. BGH-treated diabetic rats exhibited reduced levels of oxidative stress (MDA levels), inflammatory (MYD88, NFKB, p-NFKB, IKKβ), and apoptotic (caspase-3) markers, as well as higher levels of antioxidant enzymes (SOD, CAT, and GPx) in the liver and kidney. BGH contains many bioactive compounds that may have antioxidative stress, anti-inflammatory, and anti-apoptotic effects. Conclusion: BGH protected the liver and kidney in diabetic rats by reducing oxidative stress, inflammation, and apoptosis-induced damage. As a result, BGH can be used as a potential therapy to ameliorate diabetic complications. Full article
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18 pages, 823 KiB  
Article
Chemical Characterization and Bioaccessibility Assessment of Bioactive Compounds from Umbu (Spondias tuberosa A.) Fruit Peel and Pulp Flours
by Laís B. Cangussu, Pãmella Fronza, Adriana S. Franca and Leandro S. Oliveira
Foods 2021, 10(11), 2597; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10112597 - 27 Oct 2021
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2817
Abstract
Umbu, a common fruit from the northeastern region of Brazil, contains many bioactive compounds not yet exploited. Thus, this study evaluated the potential of pulps and peels of mature and semi-mature umbu as a source of bioactive compounds. Trigonelline contents ranged from 1.75 [...] Read more.
Umbu, a common fruit from the northeastern region of Brazil, contains many bioactive compounds not yet exploited. Thus, this study evaluated the potential of pulps and peels of mature and semi-mature umbu as a source of bioactive compounds. Trigonelline contents ranged from 1.75 to 6.14 mg/100 g, values higher than those of many vegetables described in the literature, such as corn and barley. The contents of extractable and non-extractable phenolic compounds were also higher than those of other vegetables. Bioaccessibility of total extractable phenolics, flavonoids, and tannins was determined (15.67–37.73%, 31.87–39.10% and 18.81–114.27%, respectively). The constituent polysaccharides of the pulp and peel were tentatively chemically characterized as arabinoxylans, arabinogalactans, rhamnoarabinogalactans, xyloglucans, and pectin of the rhamnogalacturonan type. The technological potential of peel flours was evaluated. The maturation advancement showed no significant changes in the technological properties of the flours, except for color and water solubility index. Results indicated excellent prospects for future research on umbu pulps and peels as potential sources of natural bioactive compounds. Full article
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12 pages, 6154 KiB  
Article
Black Chokeberry (Aronia melanocarpa) Functional Beverages Increase HDL-Cholesterol Levels in Aging Rats
by Elena Daskalova, Slavi Delchev, Lyudmila Vladimirova-Kitova, Spas Kitov and Petko Denev
Foods 2021, 10(7), 1641; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10071641 - 15 Jul 2021
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2690
Abstract
Plant-based foods rich in phenolic phytochemicals are among the promising strategies to counteract age-related changes in lipid profile. Aronia melanocarpa (AM) fruits are a rich source of phenolic compounds possessing lipid-modulating effects. The present study investigated the effect of 3-month supplementation of AM-based [...] Read more.
Plant-based foods rich in phenolic phytochemicals are among the promising strategies to counteract age-related changes in lipid profile. Aronia melanocarpa (AM) fruits are a rich source of phenolic compounds possessing lipid-modulating effects. The present study investigated the effect of 3-month supplementation of AM-based functional beverages on the lipid profile of healthy aging rats. Male Wistar rats (n = 40) were separated into five groups: (YC) young controls (2-month-old); (AC) adult controls (13-month-old); (A) adult animals supplemented with pure AM extract; (A + P) adult animals supplemented with pectin-enriched (1%) AM extract; (A + H) adult animals supplemented with AM extract enriched with a herbal mixture. Total cholesterol (TC), triglycerides (TG), HDL-cholesterol (HDL-C), LDL-cholesterol (LDL-C) and atherogenic indices were investigated at the end of the study. Adult controls demonstrated age-related dyslipidemia resulting in decreased HDL-C, and increased TG and TC/HDL index. The supplemented groups showed a significant increase in HDL-C levels: A + P (1.49 mmol/L) and A + H (1.61 mmol/L), respectively, vs. AC (1.09 mmol/L), p < 0.05. The TC/HDL-C and LDL-C/HDL-C indices were decreased in the A + P and A + H groups in comparison to the AC group (p < 0.05). These results indicate that supplementation with polyphenol-rich AM beverages can successfully alter HDL-C levels and this effect is further potentiated by pectin and herbs. Full article
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19 pages, 51771 KiB  
Article
Antioxidant and Anti-Inflammatory Effects of Zingiber officinale roscoe and Allium subhirsutum: In Silico, Biochemical and Histological Study
by Nourhene Zammel, Mohd Saeed, Nouha Bouali, Salem Elkahoui, Jahoor M. Alam, Tarek Rebai, Mohd A. Kausar, Mohd Adnan, Arif J. Siddiqui and Riadh Badraoui
Foods 2021, 10(6), 1383; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10061383 - 15 Jun 2021
Cited by 50 | Viewed by 4760
Abstract
In this study, the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of Zingiber officinale roscoe and Allium subhirsutum aqueous extracts were examined in a carrageenan-induced acute inflammation model. Some markers of inflammation such as hematological parameters, fibrinogen and C-reactive protein were measured. Variables reflecting oxidative stress [...] Read more.
In this study, the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of Zingiber officinale roscoe and Allium subhirsutum aqueous extracts were examined in a carrageenan-induced acute inflammation model. Some markers of inflammation such as hematological parameters, fibrinogen and C-reactive protein were measured. Variables reflecting oxidative stress included thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS), advanced oxidation of protein products (AOPP), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and glutathione were determined in both inflamed foci and erythrocytes. The in silico molecular docking simulation showed that the main components of Zingiber officinale roscoe and Allium subhirsutum bound to toll-like receptor 6 (TLR6) with high affinities. Moreover, histological examinations of paw edema were carried out. Both Zingiber officinale roscoe and Allium subhirsutum ameliorated the induced inflammation and oxidative stress status as outlined by anti-edematous, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities. Our investigation lends pharmacological support to the medical uses of these spices in the management of inflammatory disorders and oxidative damage. The results of the in silico assay satisfactory explain the in vivo effects as compared with indomethacin. Full article
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13 pages, 2038 KiB  
Article
In Vitro Antioxidant and Anti-Colon Cancer Activities of Sesamum indicum L. Leaf Extract and Its Major Component, Pedaliin
by Seoyun Kim, Hyi Young Yang, Hwa Jin Lee and Jihyeung Ju
Foods 2021, 10(6), 1216; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10061216 - 27 May 2021
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 3020
Abstract
Sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) leaves (SLs) are used as vegetables and traditional medicines in Asian and African countries. We investigated in vitro antioxidant and anti-colon cancer efficacy of ethanol extract of SL (SLE) and its major bioactive component. SLE contained appreciable amount [...] Read more.
Sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) leaves (SLs) are used as vegetables and traditional medicines in Asian and African countries. We investigated in vitro antioxidant and anti-colon cancer efficacy of ethanol extract of SL (SLE) and its major bioactive component. SLE contained appreciable amount of major classes of antioxidant phytochemicals, such as total polyphenols, total flavonoids, and carotenoids, and correspondingly exhibited antioxidant activities, such as radical scavenging activity and ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP). A cell viability assay showed that SLE time- and dose-dependently attenuated the growth of human colon cancer cells, HT29 and HCT116. Flow cytometry analysis showed that SLE increased sub-G1 (in HT29 and HCT116) and G2/M (in HCT116) cell populations, suggesting that the growth inhibition by SLE was due to induction of apoptosis and G2/M cell cycle arrest. Trans-well and wound-healing assays showed that SLE alleviated invasion and migration of HT29 and HCT116 cells in non-cytotoxic conditions. High-performance liquid chromatography analysis revealed that pedaliin (6-hydroxylueolin 7-methyl ether 6-glucoside; pedalitin-6-O-glucoside) was a major constituent of SLE. Moreover, FRAP, growth-inhibitory, anti-invasive, and anti-migratory activities of pedaliin were found. These results demonstrated that SLE possesses in vitro antioxidant and anti-colon cancer activities and that pedaliin is a major component contributing to such activities. Full article
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Review

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22 pages, 783 KiB  
Review
Recent Advances in Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer as a Herb for Anti-Fatigue: An Effects and Mechanisms Review
by Guanyu Lu, Zhuoting Liu, Xu Wang and Chunling Wang
Foods 2021, 10(5), 1030; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10051030 - 10 May 2021
Cited by 33 | Viewed by 5554
Abstract
As an ancient Chinese herbal medicine, Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer (P. ginseng) has been used both as food and medicine for nutrient supplements and treatment of human diseases in China for years. Fatigue, as a complex and multi-cause symptom, harms life [...] Read more.
As an ancient Chinese herbal medicine, Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer (P. ginseng) has been used both as food and medicine for nutrient supplements and treatment of human diseases in China for years. Fatigue, as a complex and multi-cause symptom, harms life from all sides. Millions worldwide suffer from fatigue, mainly caused by physical labor, mental stress, and chronic diseases. Multiple medicines, especially P. ginseng, were used for many patients or sub-healthy people who suffer from fatigue as a treatment or healthcare product. This review covers the extract and major components of P. ginseng with the function of anti-fatigue and summarizes the anti-fatigue effect of P. ginseng for different types of fatigue in animal models and clinical studies. In addition, the anti-fatigue mechanism of P. ginseng associated with enhancing energy metabolism, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity is discussed. Full article
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