Friday, 1 November 2013

Phytochemicals in Foods - 13 Health Benefits of Betaxanthins

Betaxanthins are Phytochemicals in the class of red and yellow indole-derived pigments , belonging to the group of Betalains, found abundantly in beets, sicilian prickly pear, etc.

Health Benefits
1. Fatty Liver diseases
In the investigation of the protective effects of bioactive agents of the liophylised table beet and carrot powder on fatty liver in a "short term" experiment, found that the higher dose of the natural product better decreased the induced free radical reactions, cyclooxygenase-2, inducible nitric oxide synthase and tumor necrosis factor-α mRNA-levels both in normal and fatty liver tissues. Although treatments failed to exert significant changes in all global antioxidant parameters, mobilized methyl group concentrations were higher after treatments in fatty liver. Favorable tendencies were also noted in the redox-homeostasis of the fatty liver after treatment, according to "[Experimental food-induced fatty liver and its adjuvant therapy with natural bioactive substances].[Article in Hungarian]" by Hegedüs V, Gerö D, Mihály Z, Szijártó A, Zelles T, Sárdi E.(1)

2. Free Radical-Scavenging Activities
In the determination of betalamic acid, the chromophore of betaxanthins, was enzymatically synthesized on a large scale from l-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA) using recombinant Mirabilis jalapa DOPA 4,5-dioxygenase for its Radical-Scavenging Activities, suggested that GABA-betaxanthin showed comparatively low activity, whereas dopamine-betaxanthin had similar activity to the red pigment betanin and the anthocyanin cyanidin 3-glucoside. Proline-betaxanthin had the highest activity of the three synthesized compounds and was similar to the flavonoid quercetin, according to "In Vitro Synthesis of Betaxanthins Using Recombinant DOPA 4,5-Dioxygenase and Evaluation of Their Radical-Scavenging Activities" by Sekiguchi H, Ozeki Y, Sasaki N.(2)

3. Antispasmodic effects
In the investigation, the effects of a hydrophilic extract from Opuntia ficus indica fruit pulp (cactus fruit extract, CFE) on the motility of mouse ileum, using an organ bath technique, and researched the extract component(s) responsible for the observed responses, showed that CFE is able to exert direct antispasmodic effects on the intestinal motility. The CFE inhibitory effects do not involve potassium channels or voltage-dependent calcium channels but rather pathways of calcium intracellular release. The fruit pigment indicaxanthin appears to be the main component responsible for the CFE-induced effects, acording to "Inhibition of the mechanical activity of mouse ileum by cactus pear (Opuntia Ficus Indica, L, Mill.) fruit extract and its pigment indicaxanthin" by Baldassano S, Tesoriere L, Rotondo A, Serio R, Livrea MA, Mulè F.(3)

4. Intestinal contractility
In the investigation of pasmolytic effects on the intestinal contractility in vitro isndicaxanthin, the yellow betalain pigment abundant in the fruit of Opuntia ficus indica, for the mechanism of action underlying the observed response, found that Indicaxanthin and IBMX significantly reduced the carbachol-evoked contractions and the joint application of both drugs did not produce any additive effect. Indicaxanthin and IBMX increased the inhibitory effects of forskolin, an adenylyl cyclase activator, and the joint application of both drugs did not produce any additive effect. Indicaxanthin, contrarily to IBMX, did not affect the inhibitory action of sodium nitroprusside, a soluble guanylyl cyclase activator. Indicaxanthin increased both basal and forskolin-induced cAMP content of mouse ileal muscle. The present data show that indicaxanthin reduces the contractility of ileal longitudinal muscle by inhibition of PDEs and increase of cAMP concentration and raise the possibility of using indicaxanthin in the treatment of motility disorders, such as abdominal cramps, according to "Inhibitory effects of indicaxanthin on mouse ileal contractility: analysis of the mechanism of action" by Baldassano S, Rotondo A, Serio R, Livrea MA, Tesoriere L, Mulè F.(4)

5. Anti cancers
In the investigation of juices of nine prickly pears (Opuntia spp.) were characterized in terms of color, acidity, sugar content, phenolics, flavonoids, betalains and antioxidant activity and tested in vitro against four cancer cell lines, found that among the cancer lines tested, viability of prostate and colon cells were the most affected. Moradillo contained the highest flavonoids and diminished both prostate and colon cancer cell viability without affecting mammary or hepatic cancer cells. Rastrero reduced the growth of the four cancer cell lines without affecting normal fibroblast viability. The research shows intervarietal differences among prickly pears in terms of juice properties and phytochemicals that could prevent oxidative stress and cancer, according to 'Phenolic composition, antioxidant capacity and in vitro cancer cell cytotoxicity of nine prickly pear (Opuntia spp.) juices" by Chavez-Santoscoy RA, Gutierrez-Uribe JA, Serna-Saldívar SO.(5)

6. Myeloperoxidase and hypochlorous acid
In the evaluation of Hypochlorous acid (HOCl), the most powerful oxidant produced by human neutrophils and contribution to the damage caused by these inflammatory cells, produced from H2O2 and chloride by the heme enzyme myeloperoxidase (MPO), found that at pH 7.0 and 25 degrees C. Formation of ferric (native) MPO from compound II occurs with a second-order rate constant of (1.1+/-0.1) x 10(5) M(-1) s(-1) (betanin) and (2.9+/-0.1) x 10(5) M(-1) s(-1) (indicaxanthin), respectively. In addition, both betalains can effectively scavenge hypochlorous acid with determined rates of (1.8+/-0.2) x 10(4) M(-1) s(-1) (betanin) and (7.7+/-0.1) x 10(4) M(-1) s(-1) (indicaxanthin) at pH 7.0 and 25 degrees C., according to "Mechanism of interaction of betanin and indicaxanthin with human myeloperoxidase and hypochlorous acid" by Allegra M, Furtmüller PG, Jantschko W, Zederbauer M, Tesoriere L, Livrea MA, Obinger C.(6).

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