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Phenolic Compounds from Plants: Towards the Formulation of New Nutraceuticals

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Bioactives and Nutraceuticals".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 March 2024) | Viewed by 14618

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Nutrition and Bromatology Group, Department of Analytical Chemistry and Food Science, Faculty of Science, University of Vigo, E-32004 Ourense, Spain
Interests: food chemistry; food technology; bioactive compounds; analytical techniques; natural food products; natural cosmetics; emergent technologies; green processes; sustainability; bioinformatics; chemical engineering; synergy; antagonism; natural and synthetic antioxidants; mathematical modeling; biological responses; toxicology
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Phenolic compounds are a vast group of organic molecules characterized by presenting at least one phenol group (C6H6O) in their molecular structure. They are usually synthetized by plants as secondary metabolites with many different functions, from defense to pollinators attraction. Phenolic compounds can be synthetized for different biochemical pathways and thus, they are a highly diverse group from the metabolic and chemical point of view. In this context, it is important to assess the renowned historical significance of phenolic compounds found in plants as they are responsible for a countless variety of potential functional and physiological properties. In this regard, it is imperative to extract, identify, quantify, characterize and concentrate these target molecules to further apply them on formulations with biological properties (antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, etc.). In particular, phenolic compounds have been widely used as nutraceuticals. So, a detailed description of phenolic compounds extracted from plants, their synthesis pathways, and their mechanisms of action to further incorporate them into new nutraceuticals formulations and evaluate their efficacy to improve the quality of diet from a nutritional and medical point of view is necessary.

Nutraceuticals formulations have gained many attentions in the last years due to the growing awareness of the population about the importance of having healthy lifestyle habits and the key role of diet. They are considered as natural products derived from food used as medicinal or pharmaceutical formulations for their demonstrated physiological benefits; they can promote health and they include both, dietetic supplements and functional foods. Therefore, the short-term goal of nutraceuticals is to improve life quality and enhance the health status while their long-term goal is to increase lifespan while maintaining health.

In this Special Issue, articles (original research papers, future perspectives, hypotheses, opinions, reviews) will present the newest results of investigations and findings in the above-presented area  The aim of this Special Issue is to present recent results, recognize and explore new directions for future research in phenolic compounds obtained from vegetal sources. 

We invite researchers to contribute to this Special Issue. Submissions should be related to themes including but not restricted to:

• Structural characterization and modification of phenolic compounds.
• Scientific studies assessing the bioactive properties and health effects of phenolic compounds.
• Molecular action mechanisms behind the properties of phenolic compounds from plants.
• Innovative applications in the nutraceutical industry. 
• Toxicological evaluation of plant extract and phenolic compounds

Prof. Dr. Miguel A. Prieto Lage
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

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Keywords

  • phenolic compounds
  • action mechanisms
  • characterization
  • metabolic routes
  • synthesis pathways
  • nutraceuticals
  • plant diversity
  • health effects
  • extraction techniques
  • sustainable production

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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21 pages, 2364 KiB  
Article
Probiotic Yoghurt Enriched with Mango Peel Powder: Biotransformation of Phenolics and Modulation of Metabolomic Outputs after In Vitro Digestion and Colonic Fermentation
by Hafza Fasiha Zahid, Akhtar Ali, Alistair R. Legione, Chaminda Senaka Ranadheera, Zhongxiang Fang, Frank R. Dunshea and Said Ajlouni
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(10), 8560; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms24108560 - 10 May 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2005
Abstract
This study investigated the health-promoting effects and prebiotic functions of mango peel powder (MPP) both as a plain individual ingredient and when incorporated in yoghurt during simulated digestion and fermentation. The treatments included plain MPP, plain yoghurt (YA), yoghurt fortified with MPP (YB), [...] Read more.
This study investigated the health-promoting effects and prebiotic functions of mango peel powder (MPP) both as a plain individual ingredient and when incorporated in yoghurt during simulated digestion and fermentation. The treatments included plain MPP, plain yoghurt (YA), yoghurt fortified with MPP (YB), and yoghurt fortified with MPP and lactic acid bacteria (YC), along with a blank (BL). The identification of polyphenols in the extracts of insoluble digesta and phenolic metabolites after the in vitro colonic fermentation were performed employing LC-ESI-QTOF-MS2. These extracts were also subjected to pH, microbial count, production of SCFA, and 16S rRNA analyses. The characterisation of phenolic profiles identified 62 phenolic compounds. Among these compounds, phenolic acids were the major compounds that underwent biotransformation via catabolic pathways such as ring fission, decarboxylation, and dehydroxylation. Changes in pH indicated that YC and MPP reduced the media pH from 6.27 and 6.33 to 4.50 and 4.53, respectively. This decline in pH was associated with significant increases in the LAB counts of these samples. The Bifidobacteria counts were 8.11 ± 0.89 and 8.02 ± 1.01 log CFU/g in YC and MPP, respectively, after 72 h of colonic fermentation. Results also showed that the presence of MPP imparted significant variations in the contents and profiles of individual short chain fatty acids (SCFA) with more predominant production of most SCFA in the MPP and YC treatments. The 16s rRNA sequencing data indicated a highly distinctive microbial population associated with YC in terms of relative abundance. These findings suggested MPP as a promising ingredient for utilisation in functional food formulations aiming to enhance gut health. Full article
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17 pages, 4154 KiB  
Article
Inhibitory Effect of Styrylpyrone Extract of Phellinus linteus on Hepatic Steatosis in HepG2 Cells
by Chun-Hung Chiu, Ming-Yao Chen, Jun-Jie Lieu, Chin-Chu Chen, Chun-Chao Chang, Charng-Cherng Chyau and Robert Y. Peng
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(4), 3672; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms24043672 - 12 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1913
Abstract
The prevalence of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is estimated to be approximately about 25.24% of the population worldwide. NAFLD is a complex syndrome and is characterized by a simple benign hepatocyte steatosis to more severe steatohepatitis in the liver pathology. Phellinus linteus [...] Read more.
The prevalence of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is estimated to be approximately about 25.24% of the population worldwide. NAFLD is a complex syndrome and is characterized by a simple benign hepatocyte steatosis to more severe steatohepatitis in the liver pathology. Phellinus linteus (PL) is traditionally used as a hepatoprotective supplement. Styrylpyrone-enriched extract (SPEE) obtained from the PL mycelia has been shown to have potential inhibition effects on high-fat- and high-fructose-diet-induced NAFLD. In the continuous study, we aimed to explore the inhibitory effects of SPEE on free fatty acid mixture O/P [oleic acid (OA): palmitic acid (PA); 2:1, molar ratio]-induced lipid accumulation in HepG2 cells. Results showed that SPEE presented the highest free radical scavenging ability on DPPH and ABTS, and reducing power on ferric ions, better than that of partitions obtained from n-hexane, n-butanol and distilled water. In free-fatty-acid-induced lipid accumulation in HepG2 cells, SPEE showed an inhibition effect on O/P-induced lipid accumulation of 27% at a dosage of 500 μg/mL. As compared to the O/P induction group, the antioxidant activities of superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase and catalase were enhanced by 73%, 67% and 35%, respectively, in the SPEE group. In addition, the inflammatory factors (TNF-α, IL-6 and IL-1β) were significantly down-regulated by the SPEE treatment. The expressions of anti-adipogenic genes involved in hepatic lipid metabolism of 5’ adenosine monophosphate (AMP)-activated protein kinase (AMPK), sirtuin 1 (SIRT1) and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator 1-alpha (PGC-1α) were enhanced in the SPEE supplemented HepG2 cells. In the protein expression study, p-AMPK, SIRT1 and PGC1-α were significantly increased to 121, 72 and 62%, respectively, after the treatment of SPEE. Conclusively, the styrylpyrone-enriched extract SPEE can ameliorate lipid accumulation and decrease inflammation and oxidative stress through the activation of SIRT1/AMPK/PGC1-α pathways. Full article
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24 pages, 1778 KiB  
Article
Thermochemical Characterization of Eight Seaweed Species and Evaluation of Their Potential Use as an Alternative for Biofuel Production and Source of Bioactive Compounds
by Lucía Cassani, Catarina Lourenço-Lopes, Marta Barral-Martinez, Franklin Chamorro, Pascual Garcia-Perez, Jesus Simal-Gandara and Miguel A. Prieto
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(4), 2355; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms23042355 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 3598
Abstract
Algae are underexplored resources in Western countries and novel approaches are needed to boost their industrial exploitation. In this work, eight edible seaweeds were subjected to their valorization in terms of nutritional characterization, thermochemical properties, and bioactive profile. Our results suggest that seaweeds [...] Read more.
Algae are underexplored resources in Western countries and novel approaches are needed to boost their industrial exploitation. In this work, eight edible seaweeds were subjected to their valorization in terms of nutritional characterization, thermochemical properties, and bioactive profile. Our results suggest that seaweeds present a rich nutritional profile, in which carbohydrates are present in high proportions, followed by a moderate protein composition and a valuable content of ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. The thermochemical characterization of seaweeds showed that some macroalgae present a low ash content and high volatile matter and carbon fixation rates, being promising sources for alternative biofuel production. The bioactive profile of seaweeds was obtained from their phenolic and carotenoid content, together with the evaluation of their associated bioactivities. Among all the species analyzed, Porphyra purpurea presented a balanced composition in terms of carbohydrates and proteins and the best thermochemical profile. This species also showed moderate anti-inflammatory activity. Additionally, Himanthalia elongata extracts showed the highest contents of total phenolics and a moderate carotenoid content, which led to the highest rates of antioxidant activity. Overall, these results suggest that seaweeds can be used as food or functional ingredient to increase the nutritional quality of food formulations. Full article
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Review

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20 pages, 2270 KiB  
Review
A Comprehensive Review on the Interaction of Milk Protein Concentrates with Plant-Based Polyphenolics
by Mansuri M. Tosif, Agnieszka Najda, Aarti Bains, Thummalacharla Chaitanya Krishna, Prince Chawla, Magdalena Dyduch-Siemińska, Joanna Klepacka and Ravinder Kaushik
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(24), 13548; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms222413548 - 17 Dec 2021
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 5246
Abstract
Functional properties and biological activities of plant-derived polyphenolic compounds have gained great interest due to their epidemiologically proven health benefits and diverse industrial applications in the food and pharmaceutical industry. Moreover, the food processing conditions and certain chemical reactions such as pigmentation, acylation, [...] Read more.
Functional properties and biological activities of plant-derived polyphenolic compounds have gained great interest due to their epidemiologically proven health benefits and diverse industrial applications in the food and pharmaceutical industry. Moreover, the food processing conditions and certain chemical reactions such as pigmentation, acylation, hydroxylation, and glycosylation can also cause alteration in the stability, antioxidant activity, and structural characteristics of the polyphenolic compounds. Since the (poly)phenols are highly reactive, to overcome these problems, the formulation of a complex of polyphenolic compounds with natural biopolymers is an effective approach. Besides, to increase the bioavailability and bioaccessibility of polyphenolic compounds, milk proteins such as whey protein concentrate, sodium caseinate, and milk protein concentrate act as natural vehicles, due to their specific structural and functional properties with high nutritional value. Therefore, milk proteins are suitable for the delivery of polyphenols to parts of the gastrointestinal tract. Therefore, this review reports on types of (poly)phenols, methods for the analysis of binding interactions between (poly)phenols–milk proteins, and structural changes that occur during the interaction. Full article
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