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Life Extension Magazine November 2012


Plant polyphenols as dietary antioxidants in human health and disease.

Polyphenols are secondary metabolites of plants and are generally involved in defense against ultraviolet radiation or aggression by pathogens. In the last decade, there has been much interest in the potential health benefits of dietary plant polyphenols as antioxidant. Epidemiological studies and associated meta-analyses strongly suggest that long term consumption of diets rich in plant polyphenols offer protection against development of cancers, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, osteoporosis and neurodegenerative diseases. Here we present knowledge about the biological effects of plant polyphenols in the context of relevance to human health.

Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2009 Nov-Dec;2(5): 270-8

Anti-inflammatory activity and percutaneous absorption of quercetin and its polymethoxylated compound and glycosides: The relationships to chemical structures.

The potential of quercetin-related compounds for topical application has not previously been systematically investigated. To better elucidate relationships of the structure and activity with skin permeation, some quercetin compounds were used as permeants, including aglycone, a polymethoxylated compound (quercetin 3,5,7,3',4'-pentamethylether, QM), and seven glycosides. Quercetin and the glycoside with glucopyranuronic acid (Q4) at a dose of 30µM completely inhibited superoxide anion activated neutrophils. QM also potentially suppressed superoxide by 90%. Both quercetin and QM showed inhibitory activity on elastase release with respective IC(50) values of 6.25 and 15.76µM. Glycosylation significantly diminished this activity. Both an infinite concentration and saturated solubility in pH 7 buffer were used as permeant doses for the in vitro permeation experiments. The flux or permeability coefficient, which is the indicator for total absorption of dermal delivery due to the use of nude mouse skin, was the greatest for QM, followed by the glycosides and quercetin. QM showed 26× greater flux compared to quercetin. No penetration of quercetin occurred at the dose of saturated solubility. Rutin generally exhibited the highest skin permeation among the glycosides. It was found that the glycoside enantiomers (Q2 and Q3) revealed completely different permeation profiles. The stratum corneum was the principal penetration barrier for quercetin and its glycosides but not QM. Rutin provoked some skin redness and inflammation after a 5-day administration in nude mouse. QM caused no irritation, suggesting that it is a superior candidate for topical delivery.

Eur J Pharm Sci. 2012 May 17

Barrier protective effects of rutin in LPS-induced inflammation in vitro and in vivo.

Rutin, an active flavonoid compound, is well known to possess potent antiplatelet, antiviral and antihypertensive properties. In this study, we first investigated the possible barrier protective effects of rutin against pro-inflammatory responses in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) induced by lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and the associated signaling pathways. The barrier protective activities of rutin were determined by measuring permeability, monocytes adhesion and migration, and activation of pro-inflammatory proteins in LPS-activated HUVECs. We found that rutin inhibited LPS-induced barrier disruption, expression of cell adhesion molecules (CAMs) and adhesion/transendothelial migration of monocytes to human endothelial cells. Rutin also suppressed acetic acid induced-hyperpermeability and carboxymethylcellulose-induced leukocytes migration in vivo. Further studies revealed that rutin suppressed the production of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and activation of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) by LPS. Collectively, these results suggest that rutin protects vascular barrier integrity by inhibiting hyperpermeability, expression of CAMs, adhesion and migration of leukocytes, thereby endorsing its usefulness as a therapy for vascular inflammatory diseases.

Food Chem Toxicol. 2012 Jun 18;50(9):3048-3055

Mechanisms involved in the antiplatelet activity of rutin, a glycoside of the flavonol quercetin, in human platelets.

The aim of this study was to systematically examine the inhibitory mechanisms of rutin, a well-known flavonoid in platelet aggregation. In this study, rutin concentration-dependently (250 and 290 microM) inhibited platelet aggregation in human platelets stimulated by agonists (i.e., collagen). Rutin (250 and 290 microM) did not significantly interfere with the binding of FITC-triflavin to the glycoprotein IIb/IIIa complex in human platelets. Rutin (250 and 290 microM) markedly inhibited intracellular Ca(2+) mobilization and thromboxane A(2) formation in human platelets stimulated by collagen. Rapid phosphorylation of a platelet protein of M(r) 47000 (P47), a marker of protein kinase C activation, was triggered by collagen (1 microg/mL). This phosphorylation was markedly inhibited by rutin (250 and 290 microM). On the other hand, rutin (250 and 290 microM) did not significantly increase the formations of cyclic AMP and nitric oxide/cyclic GMP in platelets. In conclusion, these results indicate that the antiplatelet activity of rutin may involve the following pathways: rutin inhibited the activation of phospholipase C, followed by inhibition of protein kinase C activity and thromboxane A(2) formation, thereby leading to inhibition of the phosphorylation of P47 and intracellular Ca(2+) mobilization, finally resulting in inhibition of platelet aggregation

J Agric Food Chem. 2004 Jul 14;52(14):4414-8

Inhibition of advanced glycation end product formation on collagen by rutin and its metabolites.

Several lines of evidence suggest that rutin, flavonoid in fruits and vegetables, or one of its metabolites may effectively modulate advanced glycation end product (AGE) formation. Following ingestion, rutin forms metabolites that include 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (3,4-DHPAA), 3,4-dihydroxytoluene (3,4-DHT), m-hydroxyphenylacetic acid (m-HPAA), 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylacetic acid (homovanillic acid, HVA) and 3,5,7,3',5'-pentahydroxyflavonol (quercetin). We studied the effects of rutin and its metabolites on the formation of AGE biomarkers such as pentosidine, collagen-linked fluorescence, N(epsilon)-carboxymethyllysine (CML) adducts, glucose autoxidation and collagen glycation, using an in vitro model where collagen I was incubated with glucose. Rutin metabolites containing vicinyl dihydroxyl groups, i.e., 3,4-DHT, 3,4-DHPAA and quercetin, inhibited the formation of pentosidine and fluorescent adducts, glucose autoxidation and glycation of collagen I in a dose-dependent manner, whereas non-vicinyl dihydroxyl group-containing metabolites, i.e., HVA and m-HPAA, were much less effective. All five metabolites of rutin effectively inhibited CML formation. In contrast, during the initial stages of glycation and fluorescent AGE product accumulation, only vicinyl hydroxyl group-containing rutin metabolites were effective. These studies demonstrate that rutin and circulating metabolites of rutin can inhibit early glycation product formation, including both fluorescent and nonfluorescent AGEs induced by glucose glycation of collagen I in vitro. These effects likely contribute to the beneficial health effects associated with rutin consumption.

J Nutr Biochem. 2006 Aug;17(8):531-40

Chelating and free radical scavenging mechanisms of inhibitory action of rutin and quercetin in lipid peroxidation.

Inhibitory effects of flavonoids rutin and quercetin on ferrous ion-dependent lipid peroxidation of lecithin liposomes and NADPH- and CCl4-dependent lipid peroxidation in rat liver microsomes were studied to elucidate the chelating and free radical scavenging activities of these compounds. The interaction of rutin with superoxide ion and ferrous ions and the reaction of quercetin with lipid peroxy radicals were also studied. Both flavonoids were significantly more effective inhibitors of iron ion-dependent lipid peroxidation systems due to chelating iron ions with the formation of inert iron complexes unable to initiate lipid peroxidation. At the same time, iron complexes of flavonoids retained their free radical scavenging activities. The chelating mechanism of inhibition was more important for rutin than for quercetin. The mutual effect of rutin and ascorbic acid on non-enzymatic lipid peroxidation was also studied. It was concluded that rutin and quercetin are able to suppress free radical processes at three stages: the formation of superoxide ion, the generation of hydroxyl (or cryptohydroxyl) radicals in the Fenton reaction and the formation of lipid peroxy radicals.

Biochem Pharmacol. 1989 Jun 1;38(11):1763-9

The protective effect of flavonol quercetin against ultraviolet a induced oxidative stress in rats.

Ultraviolet A (UVA) light exposed cells can induce the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) which can damage the cellular elements. Antioxidants can interfere with the production of ROS. In this study, malondialdehyde (MDA), reduced glutathione (GSH), glutathione reductase (GSSGR), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), catalase (CAT) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) levels were measured in the liver of rats exposed to UVA light in various doses. The effects of quercetin were determined as antioxidant on those parameters. Rats were divided into three groups as control, ultraviolet (UV), and ultraviolet+quercetin (UV+Q). UV and UV+Q group rats were irradiated 4 h per day with UVA light (1.25 mW/cm(2)) during periods of 0,3,6,9 days. Thus, on days 0,3,6 and 9, the rats have received 0,54,108,162 W/cm(2) light, respectively. Quercetin (50 mg/kg body wt.) was administered intraperitoneally before each irradiation period in the UV+Q group rats. MDA level in the UV group increased significantly on day-9 when compared to the control group (P<0.05). The MDA levels in the UV+Q group decreased significantly on day-6 and 9 in comparison with the UV group (P<0.05, P<0.001, respectively). GSH levels in all groups were not significantly different. GSSGR and GPx activities in the UV group were significantly lower on day-6 and 9 than in the control group (P<0.001). On all days these enzyme activities in the UV+Q group were significantly higher than in the UV group and higher than in the control group (P<0.001). SOD and CAT activities in the UV group decreased significantly on day-3, 6, and 9 in comparison with the control group (P<0.001). These enzyme activities also increased significantly in the UV+Q group on all days when compared to the UV group (P<0.001). This study demonstrated that the exposure of rats to UVA led to oxidative stress as reflected by increased MDA levels and reduced enzymic antioxidant levels, quercetin may be useful by reducing or preventing photobiologic damage.

Toxicology. 2000 Nov 23;154(1-3):21-9

Anti-inflammatory, anti-proliferative and anti-atherosclerotic effects of quercetin in human in vitro and in vivo models.

OBJECTIVE: Polyphenols such as quercetin may exert several beneficial effects, including those resulting from anti-inflammatory activities, but their impact on cardiovascular health is debated. We investigated the effect of quercetin on cardiovascular risk markers including human C-reactive protein (CRP) and on atherosclerosis using transgenic humanized models of cardiovascular disease. METHODS: After evaluating its anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory effects in cultured human cells, quercetin (0.1%, w/w in diet) was given to human CRP transgenic mice, a humanized inflammation model, and ApoE*3Leiden transgenic mice, a humanized atherosclerosis model. Sodium salicylate was used as an anti-inflammatory reference. RESULTS: In cultured human endothelial cells, quercetin protected against H(2)O(2)-induced lipid peroxidation and reduced the cytokine-induced cell-surface expression of VCAM-1 and E-selectin. Quercetin also reduced the transcriptional activity of NFκB in human hepatocytes. In human CRP transgenic mice (quercetin plasma concentration: 12.9 ± 1.3 µM), quercetin quenched IL1β-induced CRP expression, as did sodium salicylate. In ApoE*3Leiden mice, quercetin (plasma concentration: 19.3 ± 8.3 µM) significantly attenuated atherosclerosis by 40% (sodium salicylate by 86%). Quercetin did not affect atherogenic plasma lipids or lipoproteins but it significantly lowered the circulating inflammatory risk factors SAA and fibrinogen. Combined histological and microarray analysis of aortas revealed that quercetin affected vascular cell proliferation thereby reducing atherosclerotic lesion growth. Quercetin also reduced the gene expression of specific factors implicated in local vascular inflammation including IL-1R, Ccl8, IKK, and STAT3. CONCLUSION: Quercetin reduces the expression of human CRP and cardiovascular risk factors (SAA, fibrinogen) in mice in vivo. These systemic effects together with local anti-proliferative and anti-inflammatory effects in the aorta may contribute to the attenuation of atherosclerosis.

Atherosclerosis. 2011 Sep;218(1):44-52

Anti-ageing and rejuvenating effects of quercetin.

Homeostasis is a key feature of the cellular lifespan. Its maintenance influences the rate of ageing and it is determined by several factors, including efficient proteolysis. The proteasome is the major cellular proteolytic machinery responsible for the degradation of both normal and damaged proteins. Alterations of proteasome function have been recorded in various biological phenomena including ageing and replicative senescence. Proteasome activities and function are decreased upon replicative senescence, whereas proteasome activation confers enhanced survival against oxidative stress, lifespan extension and maintenance of the young morphology longer in human primary fibroblasts. Several natural compounds possess anti-ageing/anti-oxidant properties. In this study, we have identified quercetin (QUER) and its derivative, namely quercetin caprylate (QU-CAP) as a proteasome activator with anti-oxidant properties that consequently influence cellular lifespan, survival and viability of HFL-1 primary human fibroblasts. Moreover, when these compounds are supplemented to already senescent fibroblasts, a rejuvenating effect is observed. Finally, we show that these compounds promote physiological alterations when applied to cells (i.e. whitening effect). In summary, these data demonstrate the existence of naturally occurring anti-ageing products that can be effectively used through topical application.

Exp Gerontol. 2010 Oct;45(10):763-71

Color homogeneity and visual perception of age, health, and attractiveness of female facial skin.

BACKGROUND: Evolutionary psychology suggests that skin signals aspects of mate value, yet only limited empirical evidence exists for this assertion. OBJECTIVES: We sought to study the relationship between perception of skin condition and homogeneity of color/chromophore distribution. METHODS: Cropped skin cheek images from 170 girls and women (11-76 years) were blind-rated for attractiveness, healthiness, youthfulness, and biological age by 353 participants. These skin images and corresponding melanin/hemoglobin concentration maps were analyzed objectively for homogeneity. RESULTS: Homogeneity of unprocessed images correlated positively with perceived attractiveness, healthiness, and youthfulness (all r > 0.40; P < .001), but negatively with estimated age (r = -0.45; P < .001). Homogeneity of hemoglobin and melanin maps was positively correlated with that of unprocessed images (r = 0.92, 0.68; P < .001) and negatively correlated with estimated age (r = -0.32, -0.38; P < .001). LIMITATIONS: Female skin only was studied. CONCLUSIONS: Skin color homogeneity, driven by melanin and hemoglobin distribution, influences perception of age, attractiveness, health, and youth.

J Am Acad Dermatol. 2007 Dec;57(6):977-84