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Special Issue "Bioactive Plant Compounds for Sustainable Health"

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 November 2018

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Natália Martins

Faculty of Medicine, University of Porto.
E-Mail
Interests: evidence-based medicine; phytochemistry; phytopharmacology; drug discovery; natural products biochemistry; bioactive molecules; functional foods; nutraceuticals
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Gertjan van Dijk

Faculty of Science and Engineering, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands
Website | E-Mail
Interests: integrative neurobiology of energy balance; behavioral energetics; functional foods; treatment and prevention of obesity and related cardiometabolic diseases

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The impact of diet on sustainable health and wellbeing of individuals has been studied for many years, and has unravelled a plethora of complex biochemical, metabolic, and physiological mechanisms that underpin this link. In addition to the nutritional aspects of food, it has become clear that food items can contain biologically-active, non-nutritive compounds that provide specific health benefits. These compounds are phytochemicals, which are also sometimes called nutraceuticals. While some of these have made it to become mainstream drugs (e.g., metformin, reserpine), it is believed that the potential for additional candidates is extremely large. In line with these findings, an increasing demand for healthy foods that contain nutraceuticals has been observed, triggering food industry to develop and to restructure its own procedures to fulfil consumers’ desires. It is important to highlight that the definition of “nutraceuticals” is commonly confused with that of “functional foods”, as the latter category also encompasses "designer foods", which are food products formulated with higher (than natural) levels of certain bioactive compounds. Clearly it is important not only to deepen knowledge in this field, but also to clarify the existing one. Furthermore, there is a need for better understanding how bioactive ingredients in food exert their effects and to determine the specific modes of action, as also to deepen knowledge and to discover upcoming plant-food promissory matrices, always ensuring consumers’ safety by producing high quality health-promoting foods. In this Special Issue, we invite authors to submit papers/reviews in which they comment on existing food ingredients with bioactive properties, and/or to provide perspectives on novel candidates.

Dr. Natália Martins
Prof. Dr. Gertjan van Dijk
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 papers will be 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. Molecules 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 1800 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

  • Bioactive molecules
  • Nutraceuticals
  • Functional foods
  • Sustainable Health
  • Wellbeing
  • Longevity

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle In Vitro Ecological Response of the Human Gut Microbiome to Bioactive Extracts from Edible Wild Mushrooms
Molecules 2018, 23(9), 2128; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23092128
Received: 11 July 2018 / Revised: 17 August 2018 / Accepted: 22 August 2018 / Published: 23 August 2018
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Abstract
This study presents the effect of two new products based on atomized extracts from edible wild mushrooms (RoBioMush1, RoBioMush2) on the microbiota of three target groups: clinically healthy (NG) individuals, individuals with nutritional disorders (ND), and individuals with cardiovascular diseases (CVD). The microbiota
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This study presents the effect of two new products based on atomized extracts from edible wild mushrooms (RoBioMush1, RoBioMush2) on the microbiota of three target groups: clinically healthy (NG) individuals, individuals with nutritional disorders (ND), and individuals with cardiovascular diseases (CVD). The microbiota fingerprints were determined by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Modulations in the simulated microbiome were established and correlated with the presence of phenolic compounds released in the in vitro environment (a three-stage culture system GIS2 simulator, www.gissystems.ro). The high metabolizing capacity of NG and CVD correlated positively with the rest of the biological activities expressed in vitro. ND microbiota consumed a wide spectrum of monosaccharides from the products. Xylose was present in large quantities in the descending segment (minimum: 175 μg/mL for ND). The primary conclusion was that the microbiological ecosystem was modulated, as proven by the presence of specific biomarkers (e.g., ammonium levels and fingerprints of short-chain fatty acids–SCFAs), which stimulate the organism’s health status and were correlated with the restoration of a normal microbiota fingerprint. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactive Plant Compounds for Sustainable Health)
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Open AccessArticle Effect of Different Anthocyanidin Glucosides on Lutein Uptake by Caco-2 Cells, and Their Combined Activities on Anti-Oxidation and Anti-Inflammation In Vitro and Ex Vivo
Molecules 2018, 23(8), 2035; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23082035
Received: 23 July 2018 / Revised: 6 August 2018 / Accepted: 11 August 2018 / Published: 14 August 2018
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Abstract
The interactive effects on anti-oxidation and anti-inflammation of lutein combined with each of the six common anthocyanidin glucosides were studied in both chemical and cellular systems. The combined phytochemicals showed an antagonism in the inhibition of lipid oxidation in a liposomal membrane, but
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The interactive effects on anti-oxidation and anti-inflammation of lutein combined with each of the six common anthocyanidin glucosides were studied in both chemical and cellular systems. The combined phytochemicals showed an antagonism in the inhibition of lipid oxidation in a liposomal membrane, but showed an additive effect on cellular antioxidant activity in Caco-2 cells. Lutein was an active lipoxygenase inhibitor at 2–12 μM while anthocyanins were inactive. The concentration of lutein when it was used in combination with anthocyanins was 25–54% higher than when lutein was used alone (i.e., IC50 = 1.2 μM) to induce 50% of lipoxygenase inhibition. Only the combination of lutein with malvidin-3-glucoside showed anti-inflammatory synergy in the suppression of interleukin-8, and the synergy was seen at all three ratios tested. Some mixtures, however, showed anti-inflammatory antagonism. The presence of anthocyanins (5–7.5 μM) did not affect lutein uptake (2.5–5 μM) by Caco-2 cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactive Plant Compounds for Sustainable Health)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Mediterranean Wild Edible Plants: Weeds or “New Functional Crops”?
Molecules 2018, 23(9), 2299; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23092299
Received: 30 July 2018 / Revised: 3 September 2018 / Accepted: 5 September 2018 / Published: 8 September 2018
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Abstract
The Mediterranean basin is a biodiversity hotspot of wild edible species, and their therapeutic and culinary uses have long been documented. Owing to the growing demand for wild edible species, there are increasing concerns about the safety, standardization, quality, and availability of products
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The Mediterranean basin is a biodiversity hotspot of wild edible species, and their therapeutic and culinary uses have long been documented. Owing to the growing demand for wild edible species, there are increasing concerns about the safety, standardization, quality, and availability of products derived from these species collected in the wild. An efficient cultivation method for the species having promising nutraceutical values is highly desirable. In this backdrop, a hydroponic system could be considered as a reproducible and efficient agronomic practice to maximize yield, and also to selectively stimulate the biosynthesis of targeted metabolites. The aim of this report is to review the phytochemical and toxic compounds of some potentially interesting Mediterranean wild edible species. Herein, after a deep analysis of the literature, information on the main bioactive compounds, and some possibly toxic molecules, from fifteen wild edible species have been compiled. The traditional recipes prepared with these species are also listed. In addition, preliminary data about the performance of some selected species are also reported. In particular, germination tests performed on six selected species revealed that there are differences among the species, but not with crop species. “Domestication” of wild species seems a promising approach for exploiting these “new functional foods”. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactive Plant Compounds for Sustainable Health)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview Antiulcer Agents: From Plant Extracts to Phytochemicals in Healing Promotion
Molecules 2018, 23(7), 1751; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23071751
Received: 30 June 2018 / Revised: 12 July 2018 / Accepted: 14 July 2018 / Published: 17 July 2018
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (614 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In this narrative review, we have comprehensively reviewed the plant sources used as antiulcer agents. From traditional uses as herbal remedies, we have moved on to preclinical evidence, critically discussing the in vitro and in vivo studies focusing on plant extracts and even
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In this narrative review, we have comprehensively reviewed the plant sources used as antiulcer agents. From traditional uses as herbal remedies, we have moved on to preclinical evidence, critically discussing the in vitro and in vivo studies focusing on plant extracts and even isolated phytochemicals with antiulcerogenic potential. A particular emphasis was also paid to Helicobacter pylori activity, with emphasis on involved mechanisms of action. Lastly, the issue of safety profile of these plant products has also been addressed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactive Plant Compounds for Sustainable Health)
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