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Open AccessReview

The Biological Activities of Oleocanthal from a Molecular Perspective

Biomedical Science Programme, School of Diagnostic and Applied Health Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur 50300, Malaysia
Department of Pharmacology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre, Cheras 56000, Malaysia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2018, 10(5), 570;
Received: 10 April 2018 / Revised: 2 May 2018 / Accepted: 3 May 2018 / Published: 6 May 2018
Oleocanthal is a minor constituent of olive oil with strong anti-inflammatory activities. Since the pathogenesis of many chronic diseases involves inflammatory and oxidative components, oleocanthal is a promising agent to prevent these conditions. This review aimed to summarise the current beneficial health effects of oleocanthal and the molecular basis of its biological actions. The anti-inflammatory, antioxidative, antimicrobial, anticancer and neuroprotective activities of oleocanthal have been examined by previous studies. Of these, studies on the anticancer effects have been the most extensive. Oleocanthal was reported to suppress melanoma, breast, liver, and colon cancer cells. Neurological studies focused on the effects of oleocanthal against Alzheimer’s disease. Oleocanthal improved clearance of the amyloid beta protein from neurons and reduced the inflammation of astrocytes. Despite the positive results, validation of the biological effects of oleocanthal in animal disease models is limited and should be emphasized in the future. As a conclusion, oleocanthal may act together with other bioactive compounds in olive oil to achieve its therapeutic potential. The use of oleocanthal alone as a single therapeutic measure awaits validation from future studies. View Full-Text
Keywords: Alzheimer’s disease; antioxidant; cancer; inflammation; neuroprotection; oleocanthal; olive Alzheimer’s disease; antioxidant; cancer; inflammation; neuroprotection; oleocanthal; olive
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Pang, K.-L.; Chin, K.-Y. The Biological Activities of Oleocanthal from a Molecular Perspective. Nutrients 2018, 10, 570.

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