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Functional Natural Compounds

A special issue of Applied Sciences (ISSN 2076-3417). This special issue belongs to the section "Applied Biosciences and Bioengineering".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 September 2023) | Viewed by 8679

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Centro de Investigação de Montanha (CIMO), Instituto Politécnico de Bragança, Campus de Santa Apolónia, 5300-253 Bragança, Portugal
Interests: natural products; medicinal chemistry; bioactive compounds; functional foods; natural matrices; functional ingredients

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We live in a time of great access to information and attention from consumers. The growing awareness surrounding the benefits of natural-origin products with the detriment of synthetic ones has resulted in pressure on diversified sectors (e.g., food, cosmetics, energy and pharmaceuticals). Ecosystems are rich in biodiversity and natural resources, constituting an endless source of chemical compounds. Those natural matrices could be explored as extracts, taking advantage of their synergic effects. This creates an ideal opportunity for the discovery of promising molecules that could be studied as natural ingredients, acting as novel additives in the food industry or as functional compounds for novel pharmaceuticals. As a result of these challenges, the quest for functional components of natural origin is critical, and a promising research area.

This Special Issue invites researchers to contribute their original research or review articles related to natural compounds and their functionalities. Topics of interest include biomolecules extracted from plant species, mushrooms, marine and bee products, chemical and biological characterization, extraction procedures, isolation and exploitation in diversified applications.

Dr. Filipa Mandim
Dr. Celestino Santos-Buelga
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Applied Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • natural products
  • extraction methodologies
  • bio-based extracts
  • biomolecule characterization
  • functional ingredients
  • human health
  • medicinal chemistry

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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16 pages, 718 KiB  
Article
LED Light Quality Affected Bioactive Compounds, Antioxidant Potential, and Nutritional Value of Red and White Cabbage Microgreens
by Anna Podsędek, Barbara Frąszczak, Dorota Sosnowska, Dominika Kajszczak, Kamil Szymczak and Radosław Bonikowski
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(9), 5435; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13095435 - 27 Apr 2023
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1967
Abstract
Microgreens are environmentally friendly and have health benefits in addition to their basic nutritional contents. The effect of white (W), white–blue (W + B), and white–red (W + R) light on the bioactive compounds, nutrient composition, and antioxidant potential of red and white [...] Read more.
Microgreens are environmentally friendly and have health benefits in addition to their basic nutritional contents. The effect of white (W), white–blue (W + B), and white–red (W + R) light on the bioactive compounds, nutrient composition, and antioxidant potential of red and white cabbage microgreens were investigated using light-emitting diodes (LEDs). The results showed that protein, fat, ash, chlorophylls, and carotenoids were the highest in microgreens under W light, while phenolic compounds were highest in microgreens under W + B light. Supplementation with white light, as well as red or blue light, resulted in higher levels of sugars and total fiber in both white and red microgreens. Twenty-six and thirty-three phenolic compounds were identified in white and red cabbage microgreens, respectively. The identified phenolics belonged to three classes, including phenolic acids, flavonols, and anthocyanins. The antioxidant potential of both cabbage microgreens was determined by four methods (ABTS, DPPH, ORAC, and FRAP). It was found that the highest antioxidant potential was observed in microgreens grown under the W + B light combination. On the other hand, the W + R light combination increased the content of β-sitosterol and campesterol. The results may be helpful in the selection of the type of LED lighting that determines the high nutritional and health-promoting potential of white and red cabbage microgreens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Natural Compounds)
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13 pages, 929 KiB  
Article
Crude Polysaccharides from Wild-Growing Armillaria mellea—Chemical Composition and Antidiabetic, Anti-Inflammatory, Antioxidant, and Antiproliferative Potential
by Natalia Nowacka-Jechalke, Sebastian Kanak, Marcin Moczulski, Aleksandra Martyna, Konrad Kubiński, Maciej Masłyk, Nikola Szpakowska, Zbigniew Kaczyński, Renata Nowak and Marta Olech
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(6), 3853; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13063853 - 17 Mar 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1759
Abstract
Armillaria mellea is a commonly harvested and consumed mushroom in Poland. Several activities of polysaccharides from this species have already been reported. However, polysaccharides from A. mellea growing in the wild in Poland have not yet been investigated. This study was conducted to [...] Read more.
Armillaria mellea is a commonly harvested and consumed mushroom in Poland. Several activities of polysaccharides from this species have already been reported. However, polysaccharides from A. mellea growing in the wild in Poland have not yet been investigated. This study was conducted to obtain a crude polysaccharide fraction (AmPS) and investigate its chemical composition and biological properties. Our research suggests that A. mellea is a valuable source of polysaccharides, including β-glucans. 1H NMR and high-performance capillary electrophoresis analysis of AmPS revealed the occurrence of polysaccharides consisted of myo-inositol, mannitol, fucose, galactose, glucose, and mannose. Proteins, uronic acids, and phenolics were present only in trace amounts in the AmPS. The AmPS fraction was found to exhibit strong α-glucosidase inhibitory activity; however, no activity in relation to α-amylase was detected. The fraction was also able to inhibit pro-inflammatory enzymes, i.e., lipoxygenase, cyclooxygenase, and hyaluronidase. Moderate antioxidant and antiradical activity of AmPS was revealed by the ORAC and ABTS assay, respectively. The AmPS fraction was found to have antiproliferative potential against gastric and colorectal cancer cell lines (AGS, HT-29). These findings suggest that AmPS may be considered a health-beneficial food ingredient. Since A. mellea is a commonly known edible mushroom with a long tradition of use, its polysaccharides may be considered safe components for direct consumption or production of nutraceuticals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Natural Compounds)
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Review

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23 pages, 1366 KiB  
Review
Effect of High-Powered Ultrasound on Bioactive Compounds and Microbiological Stability of Juices—Review
by Zbigniew Kobus, Emilia Osmólska, Agnieszka Starek-Wójcicka and Monika Krzywicka
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(19), 10961; https://doi.org/10.3390/app131910961 - 4 Oct 2023
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Abstract
Extending the shelf life of fruit and vegetable juices plays a key role in improving food security. Ultrasonic technology can be an effective method in the process of replacing traditional heat treatment. It offers a number of benefits, such as better product quality [...] Read more.
Extending the shelf life of fruit and vegetable juices plays a key role in improving food security. Ultrasonic technology can be an effective method in the process of replacing traditional heat treatment. It offers a number of benefits, such as better product quality expressed as a higher content of bioactive substances and the preservation of the natural sensory characteristics of the juice: consistency, colour, taste and smell. This paper discusses the methods of ultrasound generation, the equipment used and advances in the construction of ultrasound devices. The influence of ultrasounds on the physical and chemical properties of juices was also analysed, with particular emphasis on bioactive substances and the effectiveness of ultrasonic treatment in the inactivation of microorganisms and enzymes. Prospects and trends in the development of ultrasonic techniques that can effectively increase the efficiency of the ultrasonic juice preservation process are also described. Sonication used alone or with other processing techniques makes it possible to achieve a positive effect on the quality of consumed fruit and vegetable juices. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Natural Compounds)
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26 pages, 3252 KiB  
Review
Inflammation: What’s There and What’s New?
by Ricardo C. Calhelha, Hala Haddad, Lúcia Ribeiro, Sandrina A. Heleno, Márcio Carocho and Lillian Barros
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(4), 2312; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13042312 - 10 Feb 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2414
Abstract
Since the dawn of man, inflammation has been known to humanity, as it is marked by pain. Inflammation processes are related to serious chronic diseases with irreversible damage to the organism, being crucial for the development of anti-inflammatory agents. Among the existing anti-inflammatory [...] Read more.
Since the dawn of man, inflammation has been known to humanity, as it is marked by pain. Inflammation processes are related to serious chronic diseases with irreversible damage to the organism, being crucial for the development of anti-inflammatory agents. Among the existing anti-inflammatory drugs, non-steroidal and glucocorticoids are commonly used; however, these compounds have been described as responsible for the increased risk of upper gastrointestinal complications and many other side effects. Therefore, it is not shocking that ethnobotany leads most modern studies on the discovery of anti-inflammatory agents obtained from natural matrices. Extracts from plants and isolated substances have demonstrated anti-inflammatory effects in a set of in vitro and in vivo anti-inflammatory models. This review describes inflammation processes with an emphasis on the most common related diseases, while also describing the most promising natural anti-inflammatory agents, by reporting on their obtention processes, mechanisms of action, and applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Natural Compounds)
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