Special Issue "Nutra-Cosmeceuticals from Algae for Health and Wellness"

A special issue of Marine Drugs (ISSN 1660-3397).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2021) | Viewed by 17273

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Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. María Lourdes Mourelle
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Guest Editor
Department of Applied Physics, Universidad de Vigo, Spain
Interests: microalgae
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Herminia Domínguez
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Guest Editor
Centro de Investigaciones Biomédicas (CINBIO), Departamento de Enxeñería Química, Universidade de Vigo (Campus Ourense), Edificio Politécnico, As Lagoas, 32004 Ourense, Spain
Interests: bioactive compounds; macroalgae; vegetal biomass; environmentally-friendly extraction technologies; membranes; waste valorisation
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Jose Luis Legido
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Guest Editor
Department of Applied Physics, Universidad de Vigo, Spain
Interests: study of the sensitivity of bacteria to external agents; herapeutic agents for uses in thermal and thalasso centers

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Microalgae and seaweeds are a renewable source of potent bioactives with confirmed impacts on health and wellness.

The interest and awareness of the need to improve quality of life and well-being has led to a greater consumption of nutraceuticals as well as the use of cosmeceuticals for “well-aging”. In this context, algae and microalgae—sometimes poorly explored—are currently gaining immense popularity among the functional food, nutraceutical, and cosmeceutical industries.

Recent advances in the characterization and evaluation of biological properties of the whole material, fractions, or isolated compounds enable their use as ingredients for the development of novel nutraceutical and cosmeceutical products.

Prof. Dr. María Lourdes Mourelle
Prof. Dr. Herminia Domínguez
Prof. Dr. Jose Luis Legido
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. Marine Drugs is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly 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

  • microalgae
  • seaweed
  • bioactives
  • nutraceuticals
  • cosmeceuticals
  • thermotherapy
  • thalassotherapy

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Research

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Article
Potential Anti-Obesity, Anti-Steatosis, and Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Extracts from the Microalgae Chlorella vulgaris and Chlorococcum amblystomatis under Different Growth Conditions
Mar. Drugs 2022, 20(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/md20010009 - 22 Dec 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1772
Abstract
Microalgae are known as a producer of proteins and lipids, but also of valuable compounds for human health benefits (e.g., polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs); minerals, vitamins, or other compounds). The overall objective of this research was to prospect novel products, such as nutraceuticals [...] Read more.
Microalgae are known as a producer of proteins and lipids, but also of valuable compounds for human health benefits (e.g., polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs); minerals, vitamins, or other compounds). The overall objective of this research was to prospect novel products, such as nutraceuticals from microalgae, for application in human health, particularly for metabolic diseases. Chlorella vulgaris and Chlorococcum amblystomatis were grown autotrophically, and C. vulgaris was additionally grown heterotrophically. Microalgae biomass was extracted using organic solvents (dichloromethane, ethanol, ethanol with ultrasound-assisted extraction). Those extracts were evaluated for their bioactivities, toxicity, and metabolite profile. Some of the extracts reduced the neutral lipid content using the zebrafish larvae fat metabolism assay, reduced lipid accumulation in fatty-acid-overloaded HepG2 liver cells, or decreased the LPS-induced inflammation reaction in RAW264.7 macrophages. Toxicity was not observed in the MTT assay in vitro or by the appearance of lethality or malformations in zebrafish larvae in vivo. Differences in metabolite profiles of microalgae extracts obtained by UPLC-LC-MS/MS and GNPS analyses revealed unique compounds in the active extracts, whose majority did not have a match in mass spectrometry databases and could be potentially novel compounds. In conclusion, microalgae extracts demonstrated anti-obesity, anti-steatosis, and anti-inflammatory activities and could be valuable resources for developing future nutraceuticals. In particular, the ultrasound-assisted ethanolic extract of the heterotrophic C. vulgaris significantly enhanced the anti-obesity activity and demonstrated that the alteration of culture conditions is a valuable approach to increase the production of high-value compounds. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutra-Cosmeceuticals from Algae for Health and Wellness)
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Article
Nutritional Value and Biofunctionalities of Two Edible Green Seaweeds (Ulva lactuca and Caulerpa racemosa) from Indonesia by Subcritical Water Hydrolysis
Mar. Drugs 2021, 19(10), 578; https://doi.org/10.3390/md19100578 - 15 Oct 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 943
Abstract
Caulerpa racemosa (sea grapes) and Ulva lactuca (sea lettuces) are edible green seaweeds and good sources of bioactive compounds for future foods, nutraceuticals and cosmeceutical industries. In the present study, we determined nutritional values and investigated the recovery of bioactive compounds from C. [...] Read more.
Caulerpa racemosa (sea grapes) and Ulva lactuca (sea lettuces) are edible green seaweeds and good sources of bioactive compounds for future foods, nutraceuticals and cosmeceutical industries. In the present study, we determined nutritional values and investigated the recovery of bioactive compounds from C. racemosa and U. lactuca using hot water extraction (HWE) and subcritical water extraction (SWE) at different extraction temperatures (110 to 230 °C). Besides significantly higher extraction yield, SWE processes also give higher protein, sugar, total phenolic (TPC), saponin (TSC), flavonoid contents (TFC) and antioxidant activities as compared to the conventional HWE process. When SWE process was applied, the highest TPC, TSC and TFC values were obtained from U. lactuca hydrolyzed at reaction temperature 230 °C with the value of 39.82 ± 0.32 GAE mg/g, 13.22 ± 0.33 DE mg/g and 6.5 ± 0.47 QE mg/g, respectively. In addition, it also showed the highest antioxidant activity with values of 5.45 ± 0.11 ascorbic acid equivalents (AAE) mg/g and 8.03 ± 0.06 trolox equivalents (TE) mg/g for ABTS and total antioxidant, respectively. The highest phenolic acids in U. lactuca were gallic acid and vanillic acid. Cytotoxic assays demonstrated that C. racemosa and U. lactuca hydrolysates obtained by HWE and SWE did not show any toxic effect on RAW 264.7 cells at tested concentrations after 24 h and 48 h of treatment (p < 0.05), suggesting that both hydrolysates were safe and non-toxic for application in foods, cosmeceuticals and nutraceuticals products. In addition, the results of this study demonstrated the potential of SWE for the production of high-quality seaweed hydrolysates. Collectively, this study shows the potential of under-exploited tropical green seaweed resources as potential antioxidants in nutraceutical and cosmeceutical products. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutra-Cosmeceuticals from Algae for Health and Wellness)
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Article
Marine Ingredients for Sensitive Skin: Market Overview
Mar. Drugs 2021, 19(8), 464; https://doi.org/10.3390/md19080464 - 17 Aug 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1542
Abstract
Marine ingredients are a source of new chemical entities with biological action, which is the reason why they have gained relevance in the cosmetic industry. The facial care category is the most relevant in this industry, and within it, the sensitive skin segment [...] Read more.
Marine ingredients are a source of new chemical entities with biological action, which is the reason why they have gained relevance in the cosmetic industry. The facial care category is the most relevant in this industry, and within it, the sensitive skin segment occupies a prominent position. This work analyzed the use of marine ingredients in 88 facial cosmetics for sensitive skin from multinational brands, as well as their composition and the scientific evidence that supports their efficacy. Marine ingredients were used in 27% of the cosmetic products for sensitive skin and included the species Laminaria ochroleuca, Ascophyllum nodosum (brown macroalgae), Asparagopsis armata (red macroalgae), and Chlorella vulgaris (microalgae). Carotenoids, polysaccharides, and lipids are the chemical classes highlighted in these preparations. Two ingredients, namely the Ascophyllum nodosum extract and Asparagopsis armata extracts, present clinical evidence supporting their use for sensitive skin. Overall, marine ingredients used in cosmetics for sensitive skin are proposed to reduce skin inflammation and improve the barrier function. Marine-derived preparations constitute promising active ingredients for sensitive skin cosmetic products. Their in-depth study, focusing on the extracted metabolites, randomized placebo-controlled studies including volunteers with sensitive skin, and the use of extraction methods that are more profitable may provide a great opportunity for the cosmetic industry. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutra-Cosmeceuticals from Algae for Health and Wellness)
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Article
Characterization of Neoagarooligosaccharide Hydrolase BpGH117 from a Human Gut Bacterium Bacteroides plebeius
Mar. Drugs 2021, 19(5), 271; https://doi.org/10.3390/md19050271 - 13 May 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1074
Abstract
α-Neoagarobiose (NAB)/neoagarooligosaccharide (NAO) hydrolase plays an important role as an exo-acting 3,6-anhydro-α-(1,3)-L-galactosidase in agarose utilization. Agarose is an abundant polysaccharide found in red seaweeds, comprising 3,6-anhydro-L-galactose (AHG) and D-galactose residues. Unlike agarose degradation, which has been reported in marine microbes, recent metagenomic analysis [...] Read more.
α-Neoagarobiose (NAB)/neoagarooligosaccharide (NAO) hydrolase plays an important role as an exo-acting 3,6-anhydro-α-(1,3)-L-galactosidase in agarose utilization. Agarose is an abundant polysaccharide found in red seaweeds, comprising 3,6-anhydro-L-galactose (AHG) and D-galactose residues. Unlike agarose degradation, which has been reported in marine microbes, recent metagenomic analysis of Bacteroides plebeius, a human gut bacterium, revealed the presence of genes encoding enzymes involved in agarose degradation, including α-NAB/NAO hydrolase. Among the agarolytic enzymes, BpGH117 has been partially characterized. Here, we characterized the exo-acting α-NAB/NAO hydrolase BpGH117, originating from B. plebeius. The optimal temperature and pH for His-tagged BpGH117 activity were 35 °C and 9.0, respectively, indicative of its unique origin. His-tagged BpGH117 was thermostable up to 35 °C, and the enzyme activity was maintained at 80% of the initial activity at a pre-incubation temperature of 40 °C for 120 min. Km and Vmax values for NAB were 30.22 mM and 54.84 U/mg, respectively, and kcat/Km was 2.65 s−1 mM−1. These results suggest that His-tagged BpGH117 can be used for producing bioactive products such as AHG and agarotriose from agarose efficiently. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutra-Cosmeceuticals from Algae for Health and Wellness)
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Article
In Vitro Prebiotic and Anti-Colon Cancer Activities of Agar-Derived Sugars from Red Seaweeds
Mar. Drugs 2021, 19(4), 213; https://doi.org/10.3390/md19040213 - 12 Apr 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 3677
Abstract
Numerous health benefits of diets containing red seaweeds or agar-derived sugar mixtures produced by enzymatic or acid hydrolysis of agar have been reported. However, among various agar-derived sugars, the key components that confer health-beneficial effects, such as prebiotic and anti-colon cancer activities, remain [...] Read more.
Numerous health benefits of diets containing red seaweeds or agar-derived sugar mixtures produced by enzymatic or acid hydrolysis of agar have been reported. However, among various agar-derived sugars, the key components that confer health-beneficial effects, such as prebiotic and anti-colon cancer activities, remain unclear. Here, we prepared various agar-derived sugars by multiple enzymatic reactions using an endo-type and an exo-type of β-agarase and a neoagarobiose hydrolase and tested their in vitro prebiotic and anti-colon cancer activities. Among various agar-derived sugars, agarotriose exhibited prebiotic activity that was verified based on the fermentability of agarotriose by probiotic bifidobacteria. Furthermore, we demonstrated the anti-colon cancer activity of 3,6-anhydro-l-galactose, which significantly inhibited the proliferation of human colon cancer cells and induced their apoptosis. Our results provide crucial information regarding the key compounds derived from red seaweeds that confer beneficial health effects, including prebiotic and anti-colon cancer activities, to the host. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutra-Cosmeceuticals from Algae for Health and Wellness)
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Article
On the Health Benefits vs. Risks of Seaweeds and Their Constituents: The Curious Case of the Polymer Paradigm
Mar. Drugs 2021, 19(3), 164; https://doi.org/10.3390/md19030164 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1805
Abstract
To exploit the nutraceutical and biomedical potential of selected seaweed-derived polymers in an economically viable way, it is necessary to analyze and understand their quality and yield fluctuations throughout the seasons. In this study, the seasonal polysaccharide yield and respective quality were evaluated [...] Read more.
To exploit the nutraceutical and biomedical potential of selected seaweed-derived polymers in an economically viable way, it is necessary to analyze and understand their quality and yield fluctuations throughout the seasons. In this study, the seasonal polysaccharide yield and respective quality were evaluated in three selected seaweeds, namely the agarophyte Gracilaria gracilis, the carrageenophyte Calliblepharis jubata (both red seaweeds) and the alginophyte Sargassum muticum (brown seaweed). It was found that the agar synthesis of G. gracilis did not significantly differ with the seasons (27.04% seaweed dry weight (DW)). In contrast, the carrageenan content in C. jubata varied seasonally, being synthesized in higher concentrations during the summer (18.73% DW). Meanwhile, the alginate synthesis of S. muticum exhibited a higher concentration (36.88% DW) during the winter. Therefore, there is a need to assess the threshold at which seaweed-derived polymers may have positive effects or negative impacts on human nutrition. Furthermore, this study highlights the three polymers, along with their known thresholds, at which they can have positive and/or negative health impacts. Such knowledge is key to recognizing the paradigm governing their successful deployment and related beneficial applications in humans. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutra-Cosmeceuticals from Algae for Health and Wellness)
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Review

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Review
Microalgal Peloids for Cosmetic and Wellness Uses
Mar. Drugs 2021, 19(12), 666; https://doi.org/10.3390/md19120666 - 26 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 679
Abstract
Peloids have been used for therapeutic purposes since time immemorial, mainly in the treatment of locomotor system pathologies and dermatology. Their effects are attributed to their components, i.e., to the properties and action of mineral waters, clays, and their biological fraction, which may [...] Read more.
Peloids have been used for therapeutic purposes since time immemorial, mainly in the treatment of locomotor system pathologies and dermatology. Their effects are attributed to their components, i.e., to the properties and action of mineral waters, clays, and their biological fraction, which may be made up of microalgae, cyanobacteria, and other organisms present in water and clays. There are many studies on the therapeutic use of peloids made with microalgae/cyanobacteria, but very little research has been done on dermocosmetic applications. Such research demonstrates their potential as soothing, regenerating, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial agents. In this work, a method for the manufacture of a dermocosmetic peloid is presented based on the experience of the authors and existing publications, with indications for its characterization and study of its efficacy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutra-Cosmeceuticals from Algae for Health and Wellness)
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Review
Applying Seaweed Compounds in Cosmetics, Cosmeceuticals and Nutricosmetics
Mar. Drugs 2021, 19(10), 552; https://doi.org/10.3390/md19100552 - 29 Sep 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2202
Abstract
The interest in seaweeds for cosmetic, cosmeceutics, and nutricosmetics is increasing based on the demand for natural ingredients. Seaweeds offer advantages in relation to their renewable character, wide distribution, and the richness and versatility of their valuable bioactive compounds, which can be used [...] Read more.
The interest in seaweeds for cosmetic, cosmeceutics, and nutricosmetics is increasing based on the demand for natural ingredients. Seaweeds offer advantages in relation to their renewable character, wide distribution, and the richness and versatility of their valuable bioactive compounds, which can be used as ingredients, as additives, and as active agents in the formulation of skin care products. Bioactive compounds, such as polyphenols, polysaccharides, proteins, peptides, amino acids, lipids, vitamins, and minerals, are responsible for the biological properties associated with seaweeds. Seaweed fractions can also offer technical features, such as thickening, gelling, emulsifying, texturizing, or moistening to develop cohesive matrices. Furthermore, the possibility of valorizing industrial waste streams and algal blooms makes them an attractive, low cost, raw and renewable material. This review presents an updated summary of the activities of different seaweed compounds and fractions based on scientific and patent literature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutra-Cosmeceuticals from Algae for Health and Wellness)
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Review
Seaweed Protein Hydrolysates and Bioactive Peptides: Extraction, Purification, and Applications
Mar. Drugs 2021, 19(9), 500; https://doi.org/10.3390/md19090500 - 31 Aug 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2703
Abstract
Seaweeds are industrially exploited for obtaining pigments, polysaccharides, or phenolic compounds with application in diverse fields. Nevertheless, their rich composition in fiber, minerals, and proteins, has pointed them as a useful source of these components. Seaweed proteins are nutritionally valuable and include several [...] Read more.
Seaweeds are industrially exploited for obtaining pigments, polysaccharides, or phenolic compounds with application in diverse fields. Nevertheless, their rich composition in fiber, minerals, and proteins, has pointed them as a useful source of these components. Seaweed proteins are nutritionally valuable and include several specific enzymes, glycoproteins, cell wall-attached proteins, phycobiliproteins, lectins, or peptides. Extraction of seaweed proteins requires the application of disruptive methods due to the heterogeneous cell wall composition of each macroalgae group. Hence, non-protein molecules like phenolics or polysaccharides may also be co-extracted, affecting the extraction yield. Therefore, depending on the macroalgae and target protein characteristics, the sample pretreatment, extraction and purification techniques must be carefully chosen. Traditional methods like solid–liquid or enzyme-assisted extraction (SLE or EAE) have proven successful. However, alternative techniques as ultrasound- or microwave-assisted extraction (UAE or MAE) can be more efficient. To obtain protein hydrolysates, these proteins are subjected to hydrolyzation reactions, whether with proteases or physical or chemical treatments that disrupt the proteins native folding. These hydrolysates and derived peptides are accounted for bioactive properties, like antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, or antihypertensive activities, which can be applied to different sectors. In this work, current methods and challenges for protein extraction and purification from seaweeds are addressed, focusing on their potential industrial applications in the food, cosmetic, and pharmaceutical industries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutra-Cosmeceuticals from Algae for Health and Wellness)
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