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Review

What Is the Current Direction of the Research on Carotenoids and Human Health? An Overview of Registered Clinical Trials

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Department of Food, Environmental and Nutritional Sciences (DeFENS), Università degli Studi di Milano, 20133 Milano, Italy
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CRC Innovation for Well-Being and Environment (I-WE), Università degli Studi di Milano, 20122 Milano, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Antonio Pérez-Gálvez and Dariusz Nowak
Nutrients 2022, 14(6), 1191; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14061191
Received: 8 February 2022 / Revised: 24 February 2022 / Accepted: 10 March 2022 / Published: 11 March 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Carotenoid Biomarkers of Dietary Exposure and Nutritional Status)
Carotenoids have been the object of numerous observational, pre-clinical and interventional studies focused on elucidating their potential impacts on human health. However, the large heterogeneity among the trials, in terms of study duration and characteristics of participants, makes any conclusion difficult to draw. The present study aimed to explore the current carotenoid research trends by analyzing the characteristics of the registered clinical trials. A total of 193 registered trials on ClinicalTrials.gov and ISRCTN were included in the revision. Eighty-three studies were performed with foods, one-hundred-five with food supplements, and five with both. Among the foods tested, tomatoes and tomato-based foods, and eggs were the most studied. Lutein, lycopene, and astaxanthin were the most carotenoids investigated. Regarding the goals, 52 trials were focused on studying carotenoids’ bioavailability, and 140 studies investigated the effects of carotenoids on human health. The main topics included eye and cardiovascular health. Recently, the research has focused also on two new topics: cognitive function and carotenoid–gut microbiota interactions. However, the current research on carotenoids is still mostly focused on the bioavailability and metabolism of carotenoids from foods and food supplements. Within this context, the impacts/contributions of food technologies and the development of new carotenoid formulations are discussed. In addition, the research is still corroborating the previous findings on vision and cardiovascular health. Much attention has also been devoted to new research areas, such as the carotenoid–microbiota interactions, which could contribute to explaining the metabolism and the health effects of carotenoids; and the relation between carotenoids and cognitive function. However, for these topics the research is still only beginning, and further studies are need. View Full-Text
Keywords: carotenoids; bioactive compounds; bioavailability; human study; foods; supplements carotenoids; bioactive compounds; bioavailability; human study; foods; supplements
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MDPI and ACS Style

Martini, D.; Negrini, L.; Marino, M.; Riso, P.; Del Bo, C.; Porrini, M. What Is the Current Direction of the Research on Carotenoids and Human Health? An Overview of Registered Clinical Trials. Nutrients 2022, 14, 1191. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14061191

AMA Style

Martini D, Negrini L, Marino M, Riso P, Del Bo C, Porrini M. What Is the Current Direction of the Research on Carotenoids and Human Health? An Overview of Registered Clinical Trials. Nutrients. 2022; 14(6):1191. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14061191

Chicago/Turabian Style

Martini, Daniela, Letizia Negrini, Mirko Marino, Patrizia Riso, Cristian Del Bo, and Marisa Porrini. 2022. "What Is the Current Direction of the Research on Carotenoids and Human Health? An Overview of Registered Clinical Trials" Nutrients 14, no. 6: 1191. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14061191

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