Feature Review Papers in Phytochemistry

A topical collection in Plants (ISSN 2223-7747). This collection belongs to the section "Phytochemistry".

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Collection Editor
Department of Pharmacy, Health and Nutritional Sciences, University of Calabria, Rende, CS, Italy
Interests: medicinal plants; plant extracts; natural bioactive compounds; essential oils; nutraceuticals; antioxidant activity; antiproliferative activity; anti-inflammatory properties; photocytotoxic compounds
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Topical Collection Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Topical Collection of Plants (MDPI) is seeking contributions reviewing any area of research in phytochemistry that has a broad appeal and is positioned within the scope of the Journal. The contributions shall critically summarize a range of phytochemical studies and methodologies, examine previously unaddressed aspects, propose and develop new approaches, exchange perspectives, or encourage new lines of study.

Review manuscripts should comprise the front matter, literature review sections and the back matter. The template file can also be used to prepare the front and back matter of your review manuscript. It is not necessary to follow the remaining structure. Systematic reviews and meta-analyses should use the same structure as research articles and ensure they conform to the PRISMA guidelines.

The topics include but are not limited to:

  • Natural products;
  • Herbs;
  • Medicinal plants;
  • Botanicals;
  • Plant biochemistry;
  • Chemotaxonomy;
  • Biosynthesis;
  • Plant primary and secondary metabolites;
  • Plant extracts;
  • Plant products;
  • Protein biochemistry and proteomics;
  • Bioactive compounds;
  • Phytoalexins and phytotoxins;
  • Macromolecules;
  • Plant volatiles;
  • Essential oils;
  • Aromatic compounds;
  • Phytohormones;
  • Polyphenols;
  • Flavonoids;
  • Alkaloids;
  • Plant-derived drugs;
  • Terpenoids;
  • Phenylpropanoids;
  • Glycosides;
  • Saccharides;
  • Dietary supplements;
  • Quality assessment of botanical products.

Dr. Mariangela Marrelli
Collection Editor

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 collection 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. Plants 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 2700 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.

Published Papers (17 papers)

2024

Jump to: 2023, 2022

18 pages, 1398 KiB  
Review
Beneficial Effects of Castanea sativa Wood Extract on the Human Body and Possible Food and Pharmaceutical Applications
by Taja Žitek Makoter, Mojca Tancer Verboten, Ivan Mirt, Katarina Zupančić, Darija Cör Andrejč, Željko Knez and Maša Knez Marevci
Plants 2024, 13(7), 914; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants13070914 - 22 Mar 2024
Viewed by 537
Abstract
The aim of this review was to investigate the potential use of Castanea sativa wood extract as a food supplement and to evaluate its beneficial properties for human health. The results of the limited amount of studies suggest promising properties, including potential anti-inflammatory [...] Read more.
The aim of this review was to investigate the potential use of Castanea sativa wood extract as a food supplement and to evaluate its beneficial properties for human health. The results of the limited amount of studies suggest promising properties, including potential anti-inflammatory effects. The literature indicates that the extract, which is rich in bioactive compounds such as tannins, offers promising therapeutic possibilities for the treatment of conditions associated with chronic inflammation. Consequently, interest in its use in food and pharmaceuticals is growing. Phytochemical studies have reported antioxidant and antimicrobial activities, and anti-inflammatory, anticancer, hypolipidemic, hypoglycemic, and neuroprotective activities. A suitable extraction method and solvent is crucial for the isolation of bioactive compounds, being green extraction technologies outstanding for the industrial recovery of chestnut wood’s bioactive compounds. Nevertheless, it is important to emphasize the importance of adhering to regulatory guidelines and obtaining the necessary approvals from regulatory authorities to ensure product safety and compliance. The regulation of herbal medicinal products with proven efficacy and traditional herbal medicinal products is well defined, monitored by authorized bodies, and subject to strict control measures. It is noteworthy that medicinal products are subject to stringent quality testing to ensure safety and efficacy in use, whereas there are no comparable regulatory standards and specific labeling requirements for dietary supplements. When using herbal products, compliance with established standards in health research is essential. Full article
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21 pages, 1203 KiB  
Review
Thymol as a Component of Chitosan Systems—Several New Applications in Medicine: A Comprehensive Review
by Adam Kowalczyk, Bartosz Twarowski, Izabela Fecka, Carlo Ignazio Giovanni Tuberoso and Igor Jerković
Plants 2024, 13(3), 362; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants13030362 - 25 Jan 2024
Viewed by 856
Abstract
Thymol, a plant-derived monoterpene phenol known for its broad biological activity, has often been incorporated into chitosan-based biomaterials to enhance therapeutic efficacy. Using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA) guidelines, we conducted a systematic literature review from 2018 to [...] Read more.
Thymol, a plant-derived monoterpene phenol known for its broad biological activity, has often been incorporated into chitosan-based biomaterials to enhance therapeutic efficacy. Using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA) guidelines, we conducted a systematic literature review from 2018 to 2023, focusing on the biomedical implications of thymol-loaded chitosan systems. A review of databases, including PubMed, Scopus, and Web of Science was conducted using specific keywords and search criteria. Of the 90 articles, 12 were selected for the review. Thymol-loaded chitosan-based nanogels (TLCBS) showed improved antimicrobial properties, especially against multidrug-resistant bacterial antagonists. Innovations such as bipolymer nanocarriers and thymol impregnated with photosensitive chitosan micelles offer advanced bactericidal strategies and show potential for bone tissue regeneration and wound healing. The incorporation of thymol also improved drug delivery efficiency and biomechanical strength, especially when combined with poly(dimethylsiloxane) in chitosan–gelatin films. Thymol–chitosan combinations have also shown promising applications in oral delivery and periodontal treatment. This review highlights the synergy between thymol and chitosan in these products, which greatly enhances their therapeutic efficacy and highlights the novel use of essential oil components. It also highlights the novelty of the studies conducted, as well as their limitations and possible directions for the development of integrated substances of plant and animal origin in modern and advanced medical applications. Full article
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2023

Jump to: 2024, 2022

48 pages, 5682 KiB  
Review
Therapeutics to Treat Psychiatric and Neurological Disorders: A Promising Perspective from Algerian Traditional Medicine
by Farida Larit and Francisco León
Plants 2023, 12(22), 3860; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12223860 - 15 Nov 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2135
Abstract
Ancient people sought out drugs in nature to prevent, cure, and treat their diseases, including mental illnesses. Plants were their primary source for meeting their healthcare needs. In Algeria, folk medicine remains a fundamental part of the local intangible knowledge. This study aims [...] Read more.
Ancient people sought out drugs in nature to prevent, cure, and treat their diseases, including mental illnesses. Plants were their primary source for meeting their healthcare needs. In Algeria, folk medicine remains a fundamental part of the local intangible knowledge. This study aims to conduct a comprehensive ethnomedicinal investigation and documentation of medicinal plants and the different plant formulations traditionally used in Algeria for the treatment of pain, psychiatric, and neurological disorders. It also intends to improve the current knowledge of Algerian folk medicine. Several scientific databases were used to accomplish this work. Based on this investigation, we identified 82 plant species belonging to 69 genera and spanning 38 distinct botanical families used as remedies to treat various psychological and neurological conditions. Their traditional uses and methods of preparation, along with their phytochemical composition, main bioactive constituents, and toxicity were noted. Therefore, this review provides a new resource of information on Algerian medicinal plants used in the treatment and management of neurological and psychological diseases, which can be useful not only for the documentation and conservation of traditional knowledge, but also for conducting future phytochemical and pharmacological studies. Full article
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25 pages, 2741 KiB  
Review
Rowanberry—A Source of Bioactive Compounds and Their Biopharmaceutical Properties
by Ofelia Marioara Arvinte, Lăcrimioara Senila, Anca Becze and Sonia Amariei
Plants 2023, 12(18), 3225; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12183225 - 11 Sep 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1439
Abstract
After a period of intense development in the synthesis pharmaceutical industry, plants are making a comeback in the public focus as remedies or therapeutic adjuvants and in disease prevention and ensuring the wellbeing and equilibrium of the human body. Plants are being recommended [...] Read more.
After a period of intense development in the synthesis pharmaceutical industry, plants are making a comeback in the public focus as remedies or therapeutic adjuvants and in disease prevention and ensuring the wellbeing and equilibrium of the human body. Plants are being recommended more and more in alimentation, in their natural form, or as extracts, supplements or functional aliments. People, in general, are in search of new sources of nutrients and phytochemicals. As a result, scientific research turns to lesser known and used plants, among them being rowanberries, a species of fruit very rich in nutrients and underused due to their bitter astringent taste and a lack of knowledge regarding the beneficial effects of these fruit. Rowan fruits (rowanberries) are a rich source of vitamins, polysaccharides, organic acids and minerals. They are also a source of natural polyphenols, which are often correlated with the prevention and treatment of modern world diseases. This article presents the existing data regarding the chemical composition, active principles and biopharmaceutical properties of rowan fruits and the different opportunities for their usage. Full article
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24 pages, 1048 KiB  
Review
Agastache Species: A Comprehensive Review on Phytochemical Composition and Therapeutic Properties
by Mihaela-Ancuța Nechita, Anca Toiu, Daniela Benedec, Daniela Hanganu, Irina Ielciu, Ovidiu Oniga, Vlad-Ionuț Nechita and Ilioara Oniga
Plants 2023, 12(16), 2937; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12162937 - 14 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1271
Abstract
The Agastache genus is part of the Lamiaceae family and is native to North America, while one species, Agastache rugosa (A. rugosa), is native to East Asia. A review on the phytochemistry and bioactivity of Agastache genus was last performed in [...] Read more.
The Agastache genus is part of the Lamiaceae family and is native to North America, while one species, Agastache rugosa (A. rugosa), is native to East Asia. A review on the phytochemistry and bioactivity of Agastache genus was last performed in 2014. Since then, a lot of progress has been made on the characterization of the phytochemical and pharmacological profiles of Agastache species. Thus, the purpose of this paper is to present a summary of the findings on the phytochemistry and biological effects of several Agastache species, including both extracts and essential oil characterization. We performed a comprehensive search using PubMed and Scopus databases, following PRISMA criteria regarding the study selection process. The available data is focused mainly on the description of the chemical composition and bioactivity of A. rugosa, with fewer reports referring to Agastache mexicana (A. mexicana) and Agastache foeniculum (A. foeniculum). Agastache species are characterized by the dominance of flavonoids and phenolic acids, as well as volatile compounds, particularly phenylpropanoids and monoterpenes. Moreover, a series of pharmacological effects, including antioxidant, cytotoxic, antimicrobial, anti-atherosclerotic, and cardioprotective properties, have been reported for species from the Agastache genus. Full article
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42 pages, 6324 KiB  
Review
Phytochemistry, Biological, and Pharmacological Properties of Abies alba Mill.
by Robert Ancuceanu, Marilena Viorica Hovaneț, Anca Miron, Adriana Iuliana Anghel and Mihaela Dinu
Plants 2023, 12(15), 2860; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12152860 - 03 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1656
Abstract
Abies alba Mill. (Pinaceae), silver fir, is a widespread gymnosperm species in Europe, important for its ecological, economic, social, and cultural significance, as well as for its use for food and bioremediation purposes. The various parts of the plant (leaves, branches, cones, wood, [...] Read more.
Abies alba Mill. (Pinaceae), silver fir, is a widespread gymnosperm species in Europe, important for its ecological, economic, social, and cultural significance, as well as for its use for food and bioremediation purposes. The various parts of the plant (leaves, branches, cones, wood, bark) are also of pharmaceutical interest due to their composition of active compounds. In the last three decades, an impressive amount of research has been dedicated to this species. The variability of the chemical composition of essential oils (whether they come from leaves, oleoresin from branches, or other parts of the plant) is impressive, even in the case of specimens collected from the same geographical area. For essential oils prepared from needles or twigs and branches, limonene, β-pinene, α-pinene, camphene, β-phellandrene, and bornyl acetate are the leading compounds, although their wide variations seem to correspond to multiple chemotypes. Both bark and wood are rich in lignans and phenolic compounds. Matairesinol is apparently the dominant lignan in bark, and secoisolariciresinol and lariciresinol are the dominant ones in wood samples. Pharmacological studies with promising results have evaluated the antioxidant effect (mainly due to essential oils), but also the antimicrobial, antitumor, probiotic, antidiabetic, anti-steatosis, and anti-psoriatic activities. Full article
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31 pages, 1994 KiB  
Systematic Review
Cachrys L. Genus: A Comprehensive Review on Botany, Phytochemistry and Biological Properties
by Vincenzo Musolino, Maria Rosaria Perri, Filomena Conforti, Micaela Gliozzi, Mariangela Marrelli and Vincenzo Mollace
Plants 2023, 12(3), 565; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12030565 - 26 Jan 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1731
Abstract
The Cachrys L. genus belongs to the Apiaceae family and it is widely distributed in the Mediterranean basin, with plant species being endemic to southern Europe, Asia, and northern Africa. Different studies, focused on the phytochemical composition of Cachrys spp. and the biological [...] Read more.
The Cachrys L. genus belongs to the Apiaceae family and it is widely distributed in the Mediterranean basin, with plant species being endemic to southern Europe, Asia, and northern Africa. Different studies, focused on the phytochemical composition of Cachrys spp. and the biological properties of their phytocomplexes, have been reported. These works mostly focused on the essential oils obtained from these plants, and pointed out that Cachrys species are a rich source of coumarins, mainly furanocoumarins. Other phytochemicals, such as terpenes, fatty acids, phytosterols, and flavonoids have been also identified. Moreover, a number of biological properties such as antioxidant, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, cytotoxic, and photocytotoxic effects have been assessed. Nevertheless, a review of the chemical and pharmacological properties of this genus is not available in the literature. The aim of this paper is to provide an overview of the reports concerning the identified phytochemicals and the biological effects reported for Cachrys spp., and to offer a comprehensive understanding of the potential of this genus as a source of bioactive compounds. The current taxonomy, the traditional uses, and the toxicological aspects of plants belonging to this genus are also reported, and the future research directions are discussed. Full article
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46 pages, 1207 KiB  
Review
Traditional, Therapeutic Uses and Phytochemistry of Terrestrial European Orchids and Implications for Conservation
by Miriam Bazzicalupo, Jacopo Calevo, Antonella Smeriglio and Laura Cornara
Plants 2023, 12(2), 257; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020257 - 05 Jan 2023
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 3703
Abstract
The Orchidaceae family accounts for about 28,000 species, and most of them are mentioned in the folk medicine of nations around the world. The use of terrestrial orchids in European and Mediterranean regions has been reported since ancient times, but little information is [...] Read more.
The Orchidaceae family accounts for about 28,000 species, and most of them are mentioned in the folk medicine of nations around the world. The use of terrestrial orchids in European and Mediterranean regions has been reported since ancient times, but little information is available on their medicinal properties, as well as on their phytochemicals and biological activities. However, plant collection for human use is still listed as one of the main threats for terrestrial orchids, alongside other menacing factors such as wrong habitat management and disturbance to symbionts, such as pollinators and mycorrhizal fungi. Therefore, the primary aim of this review was to resume and discuss available information regarding the past and current popular uses of European orchids. We then grouped phytochemical data to evaluate the presence of bioactive compounds of pharmacological relevance, and we discussed whether these could support the therapeutic employment of the different organs. Finally, we briefly debated the sustainability of orchid utilizations, considering the different threatening factors and conservation actions including plant propagation methods. Full article
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2022

Jump to: 2024, 2023

29 pages, 1181 KiB  
Review
“Cow’s Hoof” (Bauhinia L., Leguminosae): A Review on Pharmacological Properties of Austral South American Species
by Renée Hersilia Fortunato and María Jimena Nores
Plants 2023, 12(1), 31; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12010031 - 21 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2515
Abstract
The genus Bauhinia s.l. (Leguminosae), known as cow’s hoof, unha de boi or pata de vaca, has been used in traditional medicine worldwide. The aim of the present review is to summarize the studies published on the biological activity of the main native [...] Read more.
The genus Bauhinia s.l. (Leguminosae), known as cow’s hoof, unha de boi or pata de vaca, has been used in traditional medicine worldwide. The aim of the present review is to summarize the studies published on the biological activity of the main native medicinal species reported in austral South America. Of the 14 species present in the region, 10 are consumed as leaf infusions to regulate glucose and lipid metabolism, as well as used for their anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects and to treat various diseases. Pharmacological properties have been recorded in seven species. Antioxidant, anticoagulant, antihypertensive, diuretic, antimicrobial and antitumor properties have been reported in B. forficata. Together with B. holophylla, they are important for their antidiabetic properties, since several studies indicate their effectiveness as a hypoglycemic agent. B. bauhinioides is distinguished for its anti-inflammatory and antithrombotic activities and S. microstachya for its analgesic properties. Anti-ulcer and wound healing activities recorded in B. holophylla and B. ungulata, respectively, are of particular interest. Most of the species possess antitumor activity. The antioxidant capacity of flavonoids and other bioactive compounds make these plants good candidates to assist or treat various alterations related with oxidative stress, such as diabetic complications. Thus, these species constitute promising targets for new bioactive substance research and phytotherapy. Full article
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18 pages, 3394 KiB  
Review
An Integrative Approach to the Flavonoid Profile in Some Plants’ Parts of the Annona Genus
by Ana Luiza Coeli Cruz Ramos, Ana Carolina do Carmo Mazzinghy, Vinícius Tadeu da Veiga Correia, Bruna Vieira Nunes, Lucas Victor Ribeiro, Viviane Dias Medeiros Silva, Reginaldo Ferreira Weichert, Ana Cardoso Clemente Filha Ferreira de Paula, Isabel Maria Nunes de Sousa, Ricardo Manuel de Seixas Boavida Ferreira, Paula Batista-Santos, Raquel Linhares Bello de Araújo and Júlio Onésio Ferreira Melo
Plants 2022, 11(21), 2855; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11212855 - 26 Oct 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1738
Abstract
The Annonaceae family is widely distributed in subtropical and tropical regions. Several species of this family are known for their pharmacological and beneficial properties to human health, mainly attributed to flavonoids. The objective of this work was to carry out an integrative review [...] Read more.
The Annonaceae family is widely distributed in subtropical and tropical regions. Several species of this family are known for their pharmacological and beneficial properties to human health, mainly attributed to flavonoids. The objective of this work was to carry out an integrative review in order to identify the main flavonoids found in some plant parts belonging to the Annona genus: araticum tree (Annona crassiflora Mart.), graviola tree (Annona muricata), atemoya tree (Annona cherimolia Mill × Annona squamosa L.), pinha tree (Annona squamosa), bananinha tree (Annona leptopetala), and marolinho tree (Annona coriacea). Only articles published between the years 2016 to 2021 that answered the guiding question were considered, in order to obtain recent data. Then, search strategies were designated for each database used: Science Direct, CAPES Periodicals, and Scielo. Most of the studies retrieved from the databases are related to fruits. The results showed that the number of flavonoids identified varies according to the analytical methodology used to identify and quantify the compounds. Quercetin was the most commonly found compound in all fruits of the Annona genus studied, and epicatechin, rutin, and kaempferol were also found to a lesser extent. The presence of these compounds in Annona makes the fruit promising, with potential applicability in the pharmaceutical and food industry. Full article
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30 pages, 19838 KiB  
Review
An Integrative Review on the Main Flavonoids Found in Some Species of the Myrtaceae Family: Phytochemical Characterization, Health Benefits and Development of Products
by Vinícius Tadeu da Veiga Correia, Pâmela Rocha da Silva, Carla Mariele Silva Ribeiro, Ana Luiza Coeli Cruz Ramos, Ana Carolina do Carmo Mazzinghy, Viviane Dias Medeiros Silva, Afonso Henrique Oliveira Júnior, Bruna Vieira Nunes, Ana Luiza Santos Vieira, Lucas Victor Ribeiro, Ana Cardoso Clemente Filha Ferreira de Paula, Júlio Onésio Ferreira Melo and Camila Argenta Fante
Plants 2022, 11(20), 2796; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11202796 - 21 Oct 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2412
Abstract
This integrative review aims to identify the main flavonoids present in some species of the Myrtaceae family. Studies published between 2016 and 2022 were selected, specifically those which were fully available and written in Portuguese, English, or Spanish, and which were related to [...] Read more.
This integrative review aims to identify the main flavonoids present in some species of the Myrtaceae family. Studies published between 2016 and 2022 were selected, specifically those which were fully available and written in Portuguese, English, or Spanish, and which were related to the fruits araçá (Psidium cattleianum), cambuí (Myrciaria floribunda), gabiroba (Campomanesia xanthocarpa), jabuticaba (Plinia cauliflora), and jambolan (Syzygium cumini). Scientific studies were gathered and selected in Google Scholar, Scielo, and Science Direct indexed databases, out of which 14 were about araçá, 7 concerned cambuí, 4 were about gabiroba, 29 were related to jabuticaba, and 33 concerned jambolan, when we observed the pre-established inclusion criteria. Results showed that the anthocyanins, such as cyanidin, petunidin, malvidin, and delphinidin, were the mostly identified class of flavonoids in plants of the Myrtaceae family, mainly relating to the purple/reddish color of the evaluated fruits. Other compounds, such as catechin, epicatechin, quercetin, and rutin were also identified in different constituent fractions, such as leaves, peel, pulp, seeds, and in developed products, such as jams, desserts, wines, teas, and other beverages. It is also worth noting the positive health effects verified in these studies, such as anti-inflammatory qualities for jambolan, antidiabetic qualities for gabiroba, antioxidant qualities for araçá, and cardioprotective actions for jabuticaba, which are related to the presence of these phytochemicals. Therefore, it is possible to point out that flavonoids are important compounds in the chemical constitution of the studied plants of the Myrtaceae family, with promising potential in the development of new products by the food, chemical, and pharmaceutical industries due to their bioactive properties. Full article
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24 pages, 1006 KiB  
Review
Triterpenoid Saponins from Washnut (Sapindus mukorossi Gaertn.)—A Source of Natural Surfactants and Other Active Components
by Mateusz Sochacki and Otmar Vogt
Plants 2022, 11(18), 2355; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11182355 - 09 Sep 2022
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 4541
Abstract
Sapindus mukorossi Gaertn., also called the washnut, is a tropical tree of the Sapindaceae family. The plant owes its name to its cleaning and washing properties used by the local population as a natural detergent. The most important ingredients of the plant are [...] Read more.
Sapindus mukorossi Gaertn., also called the washnut, is a tropical tree of the Sapindaceae family. The plant owes its name to its cleaning and washing properties used by the local population as a natural detergent. The most important ingredients of the plant are triterpenoid saponins contained in many parts of the plant, inducing fruits, galls, or roots. The tree also contains other valuable, biologically active compounds that are obtained by extraction methods. Raw or purified extract and isolated saponins are valuable plant products that can be used in the food, pharmaceutical, cosmetic, and chemical industries. This review includes the most important biological and surfactant properties of extracts and isolated saponins obtained from various parts of the plant. Full article
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29 pages, 1686 KiB  
Review
Natural Products in Cardiovascular Diseases: The Potential of Plants from the Allioideae Subfamily (Ex-Alliaceae Family) and Their Sulphur-Containing Compounds
by Jorge M. Alves-Silva, Mónica Zuzarte, Henrique Girão and Lígia Salgueiro
Plants 2022, 11(15), 1920; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11151920 - 25 Jul 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1763
Abstract
Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the leading cause of mortality worldwide and, together with associated risk factors such as diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidaemia, greatly impact patients’ quality of life and health care systems. This burden can be alleviated by fomenting lifestyle modifications and/or resorting [...] Read more.
Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the leading cause of mortality worldwide and, together with associated risk factors such as diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidaemia, greatly impact patients’ quality of life and health care systems. This burden can be alleviated by fomenting lifestyle modifications and/or resorting to pharmacological approaches. However, due to several side effects, current therapies show low patient compliance, thus compromising their efficacy and enforcing the need to develop more amenable preventive/therapeutic strategies. In this scenario, medicinal and aromatic plants are a potential source of new effective agents. Specifically, plants from the Allioideae subfamily (formerly Alliaceae family), particularly those from the genus Allium and Tulbaghia, have been extensively used in traditional medicine for the management of several CVDs and associated risk factors, mainly due to the presence of sulphur-containing compounds. Bearing in mind this potential, the present review aims to gather information on traditional uses ascribed to these genera and provide an updated compilation of in vitro and in vivo studies validating these claims as well as clinical trials carried out in the context of CVDs. Furthermore, the effect of isolated sulphur-containing compounds is presented, and whenever possible, the relation between composition and activity and the mechanisms underlying the beneficial effects are pointed out. Full article
22 pages, 1197 KiB  
Review
Anticancer Potential and Other Pharmacological Properties of Prunus armeniaca L.: An Updated Overview
by Dusanka Kitic, Bojana Miladinovic, Milica Randjelovic, Agnieszka Szopa, Javad Sharifi-Rad, Daniela Calina and Veronique Seidel
Plants 2022, 11(14), 1885; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11141885 - 20 Jul 2022
Cited by 32 | Viewed by 9527
Abstract
Prunus armeniaca L. (Rosaceae)-syn. Amygdalus armeniaca (L.) Dumort., Armeniaca armeniaca (L.) Huth, Armeniaca vulgaris Lam is commonly known as the apricot tree. The plant is thought to originate from the northern, north-western, and north-eastern provinces of China, although some data show that it [...] Read more.
Prunus armeniaca L. (Rosaceae)-syn. Amygdalus armeniaca (L.) Dumort., Armeniaca armeniaca (L.) Huth, Armeniaca vulgaris Lam is commonly known as the apricot tree. The plant is thought to originate from the northern, north-western, and north-eastern provinces of China, although some data show that it may also come from Korea or Japan. The apricot fruit is used medicinally to treat a variety of ailments, including use as an antipyretic, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, emetic, and ophthalmic remedy. The Chinese and Korean pharmacopeias describe the apricot seed as an herbal medicinal product. Various parts of the apricot plant are used worldwide for their anticancer properties, either as a primary remedy in traditional medicine or as a complementary or alternative medicine. The purpose of this review was to provide comprehensive and up-to-date information on ethnobotanical data, bioactive phytochemicals, anticancer potential, pharmacological applications, and toxicology of the genus Prunus armeniaca, thus providing new perspectives on future research directions. Included data were obtained from online databases such as PubMed/Medline, Google Scholar, Science direct, and Wiley Online Library. Multiple anticancer mechanisms have been identified in in vitro and in vivo studies, the most important mechanisms being apoptosis, antiproliferation, and cytotoxicity. The anticancer properties are probably mediated by the contained bioactive compounds, which can activate various anticancer mechanisms and signaling pathways such as tumor suppressor proteins that reduce the proliferation of tumor cells. Other pharmacological properties resulting from the analysis of experimental studies include neuroprotective, cardioprotective, antioxidant, immunostimulatory, antihyperlipidemic, antibacterial, and antifungal effects. In addition, data were provided on the toxicity of amygdalin, a compound found in apricot kernel seeds, which limits the long-term use of complementary/alternative products derived from P. armeniaca. This updated review showed that bioactive compounds derived from P. armeniaca are promising compounds for future research due to their important pharmacological properties, especially anticancer. A detailed analysis of the chemical structure of these compounds and their cytotoxicity should be carried out in future research. In addition, translational pharmacological studies are required for the correct determination of pharmacologically active doses in humans. Full article
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23 pages, 4691 KiB  
Review
Insights into Polyphenol–Lipid Interactions: Chemical Methods, Molecular Aspects and Their Effects on Membrane Structures
by Maarit Karonen
Plants 2022, 11(14), 1809; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11141809 - 08 Jul 2022
Cited by 27 | Viewed by 2449
Abstract
Plant polyphenols have many potential applications, for example, in the fields of chemical ecology and human and animal health and nutrition. These biological benefits are related to their bioavailability, bioaccessibility and interactions with other biomolecules, such as proteins, lipids, fibers and amino acids. [...] Read more.
Plant polyphenols have many potential applications, for example, in the fields of chemical ecology and human and animal health and nutrition. These biological benefits are related to their bioavailability, bioaccessibility and interactions with other biomolecules, such as proteins, lipids, fibers and amino acids. Polyphenol–protein interactions are well-studied, but less is known about their interactions with lipids and cell membranes. However, the affinity of polyphenols for lipid bilayers partially determines their biological activity and is also important from the usability perspective. The polyphenol–lipid interactions can be studied with several chemical tools including, among others, partition coefficient measurements, calorimetric methods, spectroscopic techniques and molecular dynamics simulation. Polyphenols can variably interact with and penetrate lipid bilayers depending on the structures and concentrations of the polyphenols, the compositions of the lipids and the ambient conditions and factors. Polyphenol penetrating the lipid bilayer can perturb and cause changes in its structure and biophysical properties. The current studies have used structurally different polyphenols, diverse model lipids and various measuring techniques. This approach provides detailed information on polyphenol–lipid interactions, but there is much variability, and the results may even be contradictory, for example, in relation to the locations and orientations of the polyphenols in the lipid bilayers. Nevertheless, by using well-characterized model polyphenols and lipids systematically and combining the results obtained with several techniques within a study, it is possible to create a good overall picture of these fascinating interactions. Full article
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20 pages, 1449 KiB  
Review
Echinacea purpurea (L.) Moench: Biological and Pharmacological Properties. A Review
by Cristina Burlou-Nagy, Florin Bănică, Tünde Jurca, Laura Grațiela Vicaș, Eleonora Marian, Mariana Eugenia Muresan, Ildikó Bácskay, Rita Kiss, Pálma Fehér and Annamaria Pallag
Plants 2022, 11(9), 1244; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11091244 - 05 May 2022
Cited by 35 | Viewed by 9148
Abstract
Echinacea purpurea (L.) Moench (EP)is a perennial herbaceous flowering plant, commonly known as purple coneflower and it belongs to the Asteraceae family. The Echinacea genus is originally from North America, in the United States, and its species are widely distributed throughout. There are [...] Read more.
Echinacea purpurea (L.) Moench (EP)is a perennial herbaceous flowering plant, commonly known as purple coneflower and it belongs to the Asteraceae family. The Echinacea genus is originally from North America, in the United States, and its species are widely distributed throughout. There are nine different species of Echinacea, but only three of them are used as medicinal plants with wide therapeutic uses: Echinacea purpurea (L.) Moench, Echinacea pallida (Nutt.) Nutt. and Echinacea angustifolia DC. Several significant groups of bioactive compounds with pharmacological activities have been isolated from Echinacea species. Numerous beneficial effects have been demonstrated about these compounds. The immunomodulatory effect was initially demonstrated, but over time other effects have also been highlighted. The present review gives a comprehensive summary of the chemical constituents, bioactive compounds, biological effects and therapeutical uses of purple coneflower. Research shows that such a well-known and recognized species needs to be further studied to obtain efficient products with a guarantee of the safety. Full article
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37 pages, 6709 KiB  
Review
Structures, Occurrences and Biosynthesis of 11,12,13-Tri-nor-Sesquiterpenes, an Intriguing Class of Bioactive Metabolites
by Víctor Coca-Ruíz, Ivonne Suárez, Josefina Aleu and Isidro G. Collado
Plants 2022, 11(6), 769; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants11060769 - 14 Mar 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3224
Abstract
The compounds 11,12,13-tri-nor-sesquiterpenes are degraded sesquiterpenoids which have lost the C3 unit of isopropyl or isopropenyl at C-7 of the sesquiterpene skeleton. The irregular C-backbone originates from the oxidative removal of a C3 side chain from the C15 [...] Read more.
The compounds 11,12,13-tri-nor-sesquiterpenes are degraded sesquiterpenoids which have lost the C3 unit of isopropyl or isopropenyl at C-7 of the sesquiterpene skeleton. The irregular C-backbone originates from the oxidative removal of a C3 side chain from the C15 sesquiterpene, which arises from farnesyl diphosphate (FDP). The C12-framework is generated, generally, in all families of sesquiterpenes by oxidative cleavage of the C3 substituent, with the simultaneous introduction of a double bond. This article reviews the isolation, biosynthesis and biological activity of this special class of sesquiterpenes, the 11,12,13-tri-nor-sesquiterpenes. Full article
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