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Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(8), 4654-4681; doi:10.3390/md13084654

The Bright Side of Gelatinous Blooms: Nutraceutical Value and Antioxidant Properties of Three Mediterranean Jellyfish (Scyphozoa)

Institute of Sciences of Food Production, National Research Council, Unit of Lecce (CNR, ISPA), Via Prov.le Lecce-Monteroni, 73100 Lecce, Italy
Consorzio Nazionale Interuniversitario per le Scienze del Mare (CoNISMa), Local Unit of Lecce, Via Prov.le Lecce-Monteroni, 73100 Lecce, Italy
Dipartimento di Scienze degli Alimenti, Università di Parma, Parco Area delle Scienze, 59/A, 43124 Parma, Italy
Università del Salento, DiSTeBA Via Prov.le Lecce-Monteroni, 73100 Lecce, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Colin Barrow
Received: 1 May 2015 / Revised: 1 July 2015 / Accepted: 20 July 2015 / Published: 29 July 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Functional Food)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1640 KB, uploaded 29 July 2015]   |  


Jellyfish are recorded with increasing frequency and magnitude in many coastal areas and several species display biological features comparable to the most popular Asiatic edible jellyfish. The biochemical and antioxidant properties of wild gelatinous biomasses, in terms of nutritional and nutraceutical values, are still largely unexplored. In this paper, three of the most abundant and commonly recorded jellyfish species (Aurelia sp.1, Cotylorhiza tuberculata and Rhizostoma pulmo) in the Mediterranean Sea were subject to investigation. A sequential enzymatic hydrolysis of jellyfish proteins was set up by pepsin and collagenase treatments of jellyfish samples after aqueous or hydroalcoholic protein extraction. The content and composition of proteins, amino acids, phenolics, and fatty acids of the three species were recorded and compared. Protein content (mainly represented by collagen) up to 40% of jellyfish dry weight were found in two of the three jellyfish species (C. tuberculata and R. pulmo), whereas the presence of ω-3 and ω-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) was significantly higher in the zooxanthellate jellyfish C. tuberculata only. Remarkable antioxidant ability was also recorded from both proteinaceous and non proteinaceous extracts and the hydrolyzed protein fractions in all the three species. The abundance of collagen, peptides and other bioactive molecules make these Mediterranean gelatinous biomasses a largely untapped source of natural compounds of nutraceutical, cosmeceutical and pharmacological interest. View Full-Text
Keywords: novel foods; marine jellyfish; macrozooplankton; antioxidants; collagen; nutraceuticals novel foods; marine jellyfish; macrozooplankton; antioxidants; collagen; nutraceuticals

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Leone, A.; Lecci, R.M.; Durante, M.; Meli, F.; Piraino, S. The Bright Side of Gelatinous Blooms: Nutraceutical Value and Antioxidant Properties of Three Mediterranean Jellyfish (Scyphozoa). Mar. Drugs 2015, 13, 4654-4681.

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