Molecular and Cellular Aspects of the Beneficial Effects of Natural Products on Chronic Diseases
Chronic diseases account for more than 80% of deaths across the globe. They include hypertension, diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular, kidney, respiratory, and liver diseases and are often characterized by long-term, low-grade inflammation. Chronic diseases share several common risk factors and underlying determinants, such as low physical activity, obesity, poor diet, disturbed sleep patterns, and stress. These common determinants represent opportunities for effective intervention to improve the disease trajectory toward a more favorable course. Natural products are the oldest forms of medication in human history, and bioactive molecules from natural products can still contribute to new drug development today thanks to their broad chemical and functional diversity. Over the past few decades, several studies have demonstrated that the dietary intake of vegetables, fruits, grains, and legumes rich in bioactive compounds such as flavonoids, anthocyanins, procyanidins, and several others can help combat and prevent various chronic conditions. Considering that oxidative stress and chronic inflammation are the hallmarks of several chronic diseases, promising cellular effects of various bioactive molecules are their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory actions. Other promising properties are the anti-lipogenic and anti-diabetic activities for the treatment of metabolic diseases. However, the detailed effects of bioactive natural compounds at the cellular and molecular levels remain largely unknown. The scope of this Topic is to highlight the recent advances and progress made in the mechanisms of action of bioactive natural compounds against chronic diseases. We welcome original research, reviews, and perspective articles describing in vivo, in vitro, and in silico studies. We look forward to receiving your contributions.
Prof. Dr. Claudio Luparello
Dr. Patrizia Bovolin
- chronic diseases
- bioactive natural compounds
- metabolic syndrome
- cardiovascular diseases
- liver diseases
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International Journal of Molecular Sciences
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