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Nutrients 2018, 10(12), 1898;

Sourdough Fermentation Favorably Influences Selenium Biotransformation and the Biological Effects of Flatbread

Department of Agri-Food Sciences and Technologies (DISTAL), University of Bologna, Piazza Goidanich 60, 47521 Cesena, Italy
Department of Food Safety, Nutrition, and Veterinary Public Health, Istituto Superiore di Sanità-Italian National Institute of Health, Viale Regina Elena 299, 00161 Rome, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 25 October 2018 / Revised: 26 November 2018 / Accepted: 28 November 2018 / Published: 3 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Benefits of Fermentation)
PDF [404 KB, uploaded 3 December 2018]


Although selenium is of great importance for the human body, in several world regions the intake of this essential trace element does not meet the dietary reference values. To achieve optimal intake, fortification of bread by using selenium-enriched flour has been put forward. Less is known on the potential effect of sourdough fermentation, which might be worth exploring as the biological effects of selenium strongly depend on its chemical form and sourdough fermentation is known to cause transformations of nutrients and phytochemicals, including the conversion of inorganic selenium into organic selenocompounds. Here we investigated the bio transformation of selenium by sourdough fermentation in a typical Italian flatbread (piadina) made with standard (control) or selenium-enriched flour. The different piadina were submitted to in vitro digestion, and the biological activity of the resulting hydrolysates was tested by means of cultured human liver cells exposed to an exogenous oxidative stress. The use of selenium-enriched flour and sourdough fermentation increased the total content of bioaccessible selenium in organic form, compared to conventional fermentation, and led to protective effects counteracting oxidative damage in cultured cells. The present study suggests that selenium-rich, sourdough-fermented bakery products show promise for improving human selenium nutrition whenever necessary.
Keywords: sourdough fermentation; selenium; in vitro digestion; HepG2 cells sourdough fermentation; selenium; in vitro digestion; HepG2 cells
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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Di Nunzio, M.; Bordoni, A.; Aureli, F.; Cubadda, F.; Gianotti, A. Sourdough Fermentation Favorably Influences Selenium Biotransformation and the Biological Effects of Flatbread. Nutrients 2018, 10, 1898.

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