Citrus spp. are among the most widespread plants cultivated worldwide and every year millions of tons of fruit, juices, or processed compounds are produced and consumed, representing one of the main sources of nutrients in human diet. Among these, the flavonoids play a key role in providing a wide range of health beneficial effects. Apigenin, diosmetin, luteolin, acacetin, chrysoeriol, and their respective glycosides, that occur in concentrations up to 60 mg/L, are the most common flavones found in Citrus fruits and juices. The unique characteristics of their basic skeleton and the nature and position of the substituents have attracted and stimulated vigorous investigations as a consequence of an enormous biological potential, that manifests itself as (among other properties) antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antimicrobial, and anticancer activities. This review analyzes the biochemical, pharmacological, and biological properties of Citrus flavones, emphasizing their occurrence in Citrus spp. fruits and juices, on their bioavailability, and their ability to modulate signal cascades and key metabolic enzymes both in vitro and in vivo. Electronic databases including PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, and SciFinder were used to investigate recent published articles on Citrus spp. in terms of components and bioactivity potentials.
Although the chemical composition and biological properties of some species of the genus Pistacia has been investigated, studies on hull essential oil of Pistacia vera L. variety Bronte (HEO) are currently lacking. In this work, we have carried out an in-depth phytochemical profile elucidation by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis, and an evaluation of antioxidant scavenging properties of HEO, using several different in vitro methods, checking also its cytoprotective potential on lymphocytes treated with tert-butyl hydroperoxide. Moreover, the antimicrobial activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative strains, both American Type Culture Collection (ATCC) and clinical isolates, was also investigated. GC-MS analysis highlighted the richness of this complex matrix, with the identification of 40 derivatives. The major components identified were 4-Carene (31.743%), α-Pinene (23.584%), d-Limonene (8.002%), and 3-Carene (7.731%). The HEO showed a strong iron chelating activity and was found to be markedly active against hydroxyl radical, while scarce effects were found against 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical. Moreover, pre-treatment with HEO was observed to significantly increase the cell viability, decreasing the lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release. HEO was bactericidal against all the tested strains at the concentration of 7.11 mg/mL, with the exception of Pseudomonas aeruginosa ATCC 9027. The obtained results demonstrate the strong free-radical scavenging activity of HEO along with remarkable cytoprotective and antimicrobial properties.
Lactate dehydrogenase (LHD) is a key enzyme of anaerobic metabolism in almost all living organisms and it is also a functional checkpoint for glucose restoration during gluconeogenesis and single-stranded DNA metabolism. This enzyme has a well preserved structure during evolution and among the species, with little, but sometimes very useful, changes in the amino acid sequence, which makes it an attractive target for the design and construction of functional molecules able to modulate its catalytic potential and expression. Research has focused mainly on the selection of modulator especially as far as LDH isozymes (especially LDH-5) and lactate dehydrogenases of Plasmodium falciparum (pfLDH) are concerned. This review summarizes the recent advances in the design and development of inhibitors, pointing out their specificity and therapeutic potentials.
Flavonols are a subclass of natural flavonoids characterized by a remarkable number of biotechnological applications and health-promoting properties. They attract researchers’ attention due to many epidemiological studies supporting their usage. They are phytochemicals commonly present in our diet, being ubiquitous in the plant kingdom and, in particular, relatively very abundant in fruits and vegetables. All these aspects make flavonols candidates of choice for the valorization of products, based on the presence of a remarkable number of different chemical structures, each one characterized by specific chemical features capable of influencing biological targets inside the living organisms in very different manners. In this review, we analyzed the biochemical and physiological characteristics of flavonols focalizing our attention on the most promising compounds to shed some light on their increasing utilization in biotechnological applications in processing industries, as well as their suitable employment to improve the overall wellness of the humankind.
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