Sustainable Exploitation of Plant-Based Matrices—Biologically Active Compounds and Their Extraction, Applications, and Potential Health Benefits

A special issue of Plants (ISSN 2223-7747). This special issue belongs to the section "Phytochemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 September 2024 | Viewed by 4201

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Catering and nutrition, University of Food Technologies, 4000 Plovdiv, Bulgaria
Interests: dietary habits; healthy lifestyle; eating disorders; plant-based nutrition; phytochemistry; food chemistry; fruit characteristics
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The exploitation of plant resources demands a sustainable approach due to soil degradation, loss of biodiversity, and extensive usage in various fields. An increased demand for phytonutrients accelerates the need for scientific research that will reveal the vast spectrum of health-promoting constituents (flavonoids, carotenoids, polyphenols, alkaloids, phytosterols, vitamins, and minerals, among others) as well as their corresponding activities (immune health, skin health, bone health, cardiovascular health, anti-cancer, etc.).
Therefore, researchers pay special attention to the bioactive compounds synthesized by plants. The utilization of fruit by-products is another important field that not only targets zero-waste to the environment but also the sustainable exploitation of all value-added resources. The development of new products with functional ingredients provides opportunities in the treatment of non-communicable diseases such as oxidative stress, diabetes, obesity, metabolic syndrome, and others that are widely spread worldwide.
This SI aims at disseminating some of the most recent and significant contributions in natural products research including phytochemicals, biological activities, and practical application in the daily diet in the view of the sustainable exploitation of resources.

Dr. Dasha Mihaylova
Dr. Aneta Popova
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • polyphenols
  • nutraceuticals
  • antioxidants
  • phytochemicals
  • phyto-nutrition
  • sustainable
  • natural products
  • health enhancing
  • functional foods

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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12 pages, 959 KiB  
Article
Biological Activities and Polyphenol Content of Qi Cha Tea®, a Functional Beverage of White Tea Containing Botanicals and Dry Botanical Extracts with European Health Claims
by Jean Michel Maixent, Meriam Belaiba, Olivier Pons, Enora Roulleau, Jalloul Bouajila and Jean-Marc Zeil
Plants 2023, 12(18), 3231; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12183231 - 11 Sep 2023
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Abstract
Infusions of Camellia sinensis leaves have been known for their health benefits. The Bio Concentrate Assets® (ABC) method is a method of enriching organic infusion leaves (from Camellia sinensis) with organic dry and concentrated extracts using organic acacia gum, and its [...] Read more.
Infusions of Camellia sinensis leaves have been known for their health benefits. The Bio Concentrate Assets® (ABC) method is a method of enriching organic infusion leaves (from Camellia sinensis) with organic dry and concentrated extracts using organic acacia gum, and its application to white tea has provided Qi cha tea®. In the present study, the content of tea polyphenols and caffeine, and the biochemical properties of Qi cha tea® and its botanical constituents (elderberry, tulsi, Echinacea purpurea, orange peel, lemongrass, and acacia gum) were assessed. Antioxidant and cell viability activities were determined by the 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) assay and MTT (3-(4, 5-dimethyl thiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyl tetrazolium bromide) assay in human Caco-2 and HCT-116 cell lines, and ascorbic acid and tamoxifen, respectively. The caffeine and polyphenol composition of Qi cha tea® was modified with less caffeine and gallic acid and more epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) than the original white tea. The majority of the tested botanical samples including Qi cha tea® at 50 µg/mL show similar antioxidant activities, with the exception of Echinacea purpurea. The greatest effect was found for white tea. The antioxidant power of the Qi cha tea® (90% at 50 µg/mL for pressurized liquid extraction (PLE) was divided by approximately a factor of two (61% at 50 µg/mL for pressurized liquid extraction products (PLEP)), which corresponds to the 48.3% (mass/mass) white tea original content in the Qi cha tea®. Qi cha tea® shows the lowest cytotoxic activity in the viability of the two cell lines when compared to white tea. The application of the ABC method to Qi cha tea® using various botanicals and dry extract with acacia gum as blinder has allowed the development of a new innovative functional health beverage that complies with European health claims. Full article
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Review

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20 pages, 5041 KiB  
Review
Chemical Compositions, Pharmacological Properties and Medicinal Effects of Genus Passiflora L.: A Review
by Krastena Nikolova, Margarita Velikova, Galia Gentscheva, Anelia Gerasimova, Pavlo Slavov, Nikolay Harbaliev, Lubomir Makedonski, Dragomira Buhalova, Nadezhda Petkova and Anna Gavrilova
Plants 2024, 13(2), 228; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants13020228 - 13 Jan 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1352
Abstract
Practically all aboveground plants parts of Passiflora vines can be included in the compositions of dietary supplements, medicines, and cosmetics. It has a diverse chemical composition and a wide range of biologically active components that determine its diverse pharmacological properties. Studies related to [...] Read more.
Practically all aboveground plants parts of Passiflora vines can be included in the compositions of dietary supplements, medicines, and cosmetics. It has a diverse chemical composition and a wide range of biologically active components that determine its diverse pharmacological properties. Studies related to the chemical composition of the plant are summarized here, and attention has been paid to various medical applications—(1) anti-inflammatory, nephroprotective; (2) anti-depressant; (3) antidiabetic; (4) hepatoprotective; (5) antibacterial and antifungal; and (6) antipyretic and other. This review includes studies on the safety, synergistic effects, and toxicity that may occur with the use of various dietary supplements based on it. Attention has been drawn to its application in cosmetics and to patented products containing passionflower. Full article
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37 pages, 729 KiB  
Review
Exploring the Sustainable Exploitation of Bioactive Compounds in Pelargonium sp.: Beyond a Fragrant Plant
by Sara Roman, Catalina Voaides and Narcisa Babeanu
Plants 2023, 12(24), 4123; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12244123 - 10 Dec 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1656
Abstract
This review article aims to present an overview regarding the volatile compounds in different scented species of Pelargonium and their biological activities, immunomodulatory activity, cytotoxic activity, high larvicidal activity and ethnopharmacological uses. Although the Pelargonium genus includes many species, we focused only on [...] Read more.
This review article aims to present an overview regarding the volatile compounds in different scented species of Pelargonium and their biological activities, immunomodulatory activity, cytotoxic activity, high larvicidal activity and ethnopharmacological uses. Although the Pelargonium genus includes many species, we focused only on the scented ones, with the potential to be used in different domains. Pelargonium essential oil showed great properties as antioxidant activity, antibacterial activity (against K. pneumonie, S. aureus or E. coli strains) and antifungal activity (against many fungi including Candida sp.), the responsible compounds for these properties being tannins, flavones, flavonols, flavonoids, phenolic acids and coumarins. Due to the existence of bioactive constituents in the chemical composition of fresh leaves, roots, or flowers of Pelargonium sp. (such as monoterpenoid compounds–citronellol, geraniol, linalool, and flavonoids–myricetin, quercetin and kaempferol), this species is still valuable, the bio-compounds representing the base of innovative substitutes in food processing industry, nutraceuticals, or preventive human or veterinary medicine (substitute of antibiotics). Highlighting the volatile chemical composition and properties of this scented plant aims to rediscover it and to emphasize the vast spectrum of health-promoting constituents for a sustainable approach. Future research directions should point to the application of plant biotechnology with a significant role in conservation strategy and to stimulate commercial interest. Full article
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