Publications by authors named "Antonello Santini"

117 Publications

Deep-frying purple potato using sunflower oil: effect on the polyphenols, anthocyanins and antioxidant activity.

Heliyon 2022 May 26;8(5):e09337. Epub 2022 Apr 26.

Department of Pharmacy, University of Napoli Federico II, Via. D. Montesano 49, 80131, Napoli, Italy.

The potato is a root vegetable native to the Americas; it consists of the starchy tuber of the plant . There are many varieties, and the flesh can have different colour ranging from yellow to red and purple. Coloured varieties have a denser texture and slightly nuttier, earthier flavour than other potatoes. The desirable quality characteristics of potatoes depends on the intended use, and the acceptability of raw potatoes is determined by size, shape, colour, and the quality of can be evaluated in terms of colour, flavour, and texture. Deep-frying is the century-old and it is among the most common cooking processes, still being used to prepare a variety of food products on both industrial and domestic scales. Frying the potatoes is among the tastiest and appreciated way to cook this vegetable. Purple fleshed potatoes are widely considered one of the best-tasting purple potatoes varieties, they have a nice taste and add colour to a meal. They are a source of beneficial health compounds which makes them interesting as functional food. The anthocyanins present in the Purple Majesty variety are interesting for their health promoting abilities, anti-oxidative activity, and even other health beneficial effects, e.g. anti-influenza virus activity, and anti-stomach cancer activity. The aim of this study has been to assess the effect of deep-frying of purple potato Purple Majesty using sunflower oil on the polyphenols, anthocyanins and to evaluate the antioxidant activity of the cooked matrix compared to the fresh one. The results seem to suggest that the healthy characteristics of this functional food are retained after the cooking by frying.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2022.e09337DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9079169PMC
May 2022

Relationship between Immune Cells, Depression, Stress, and Psoriasis: Could the Use of Natural Products Be Helpful?

Molecules 2022 Mar 17;27(6). Epub 2022 Mar 17.

Department of Chemical, Biological, Pharmaceutical and Environmental Sciences, University of Messina, Viale Stagno d'Alcontres, 31, 98166 Messina, Italy.

Psoriasis is one of the most widespread chronic inflammatory skin diseases, affecting about 2%-3% of the worldwide adult population. The pathogenesis of this disease is quite complex, but an interaction between genetic and environmental factors has been recognized with an essential modulation of inflammatory and immune responses in affected patients. Psoriatic plaques generally represent the clinical psoriatic feature resulting from an abnormal proliferation and differentiation of keratinocytes, which cause dermal hyperplasia, skin infiltration of immune cells, and increased capillarity. Some scientific pieces of evidence have reported that psychological stress may play a key role in psoriasis, and the disease itself may cause stress conditions in patients, thus reproducing a vicious cycle. The present review aims at examining immune cell involvement in psoriasis and the relationship of depression and stress in its pathogenesis and development. In addition, this review contains a focus on the possible use of natural products, thus pointing out their mechanism of action in order to counteract clinical and psychological symptoms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/molecules27061953DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8954591PMC
March 2022

Mineral and Microbiological Analysis of Spices and Aromatic Herbs.

Foods 2022 Feb 15;11(4). Epub 2022 Feb 15.

Department of Pharmacy, University of Napoli Federico II, Via D. Montesano 49, 80131 Napoli, Italy.

Spices and aromatic herbs have always had great historical importance in human nutrition. Their use has been documented for centuries as a rich source of bioactive compounds; they have been used for their health benefits and also for flavoring or coloring food. However, despite the many health properties linked to the use of spices and aromatic herbs, these can represent biological hazards and can contain chemical substances of concern. Certainly, monitoring potential health hazards in spices and aromatic herbs includes microbiological safety and also the content of inorganic substances: both represent a key step. This research aims at monitoring the compliance of various spices and aromatic herbs from a non-European country market (namely: black cumin seeds, Iranian Tokhme Sharbati, clove buds, Shahjeera, Abbaszadeh saffron, organic fenugreek, whole black pepper, cinnamon, Abthul Ahmar (Asario), Ajwan seeds, whole coriander seeds, black sesame seeds, Sabja seeds) with the current European Union (EU) and WHO regulations, when available, regarding mineral and microbiological parameters. In particular, microbiological assays using rapid and conventional methods, and trace mineral determination by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) were performed. Results show the safety of the tested spices, given that the microbiological parameters were within the legal microbiological criteria set by the European Commission Regulation (EC) No. 2073/2005 and its amendment Regulation (EC) No. 1441/2007. With reference to potentially toxic Cd, Pb, As, Hg, these were within the limits set by the European Commission Regulation (EC) No. 1881/2006 and its amendments, Regulation (EU) No. 1317/2021 and Regulation (EU) No. 1323/2021, and WHO. According to EU regulations, for Pb content, 2 samples out of 16 showed values different from the set limits.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/foods11040548DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8871210PMC
February 2022

Chemical Characterization, Antibacterial Activity, and Embryo Acute Toxicity of L. Genotype from Sicily (Italy).

Foods 2022 Feb 14;11(4). Epub 2022 Feb 14.

Department of Biomedical and Dental Sciences and Morphofunctional Imaging, University of Messina, 98125 Messina, Italy.

This study reports a full characterization of the Sicilian sumac, L. This fruit represents a potential source of fiber (33.21 ± 1.02%) and unsaturated fatty acids, being the contents of linoleic and α-linolenic acids, 30.82 ± 1.21% and 1.85 ± 0.07%, respectively. In addition, the content of phenolic and total anthocyanin was 71.69 ± 1.23 mg/g as gallic acid equivalents, and 6.71 ± 0.12 mg/g as cyanidin-3-O-glucoside equivalents, respectively. The high content in mineral elements, consisting mainly of potassium, calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus, followed by aluminum, iron, sodium, boron, and zinc, was detected by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Moreover, its antimicrobial activity was evaluated against multidrug resistant (MDR) microorganisms, represented by and strains isolated from poultry. The activity of seven different sumac fruit extracts obtained using the following solvents-ethanol (SE), methanol (SM), acetone (SA), ethanol and water (SEW), methanol and water (SMW), acetone and water (SAW), water (SW)-was evaluated. The polyphenol profile of SM extract, which showed better activity, was analyzed by ultra-high performance liquid chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry (UHPLC-MS). The major component identified was gallic acid, followed by quercetin, methyl digallate, pentagalloyl-hexoside, and kaempferol 3-O-glucoside. The non-toxicity of Sicilian was confirmed by testing the effect of the same extract on zebrafish embryos.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/foods11040538DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8871098PMC
February 2022

Photoprotection and skin irritation effect of hydrogels containing hydroalcoholic extract of red propolis: A natural pathway against skin cancer.

Heliyon 2022 Feb 3;8(2):e08893. Epub 2022 Feb 3.

Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Porto, Rua de Jorge Viterbo Ferreira, 228, 4050-313 Porto, Portugal.

The use of natural products in sunscreen formulations as a prophylactic measure against skin cancer is receiving special attention attributed to the photoprotective and antioxidant properties of their chemical components. In this work, we describe the development of topical hydrogel formulations containing hydroalcoholic extract of red propolis (HERP), and the evaluation of the dermal sensitizing effect of the developed products. Sunscreen formulations composed of HERP in different concentrations (1.5, 2.5 or 3.5% w/w) alone or in combination with a chemical (octyl methoxycinnamate) and/or physical (titanium dioxide) filters were developed using poloxamer 407 as gel basis. The preliminary and accelerated stability tests, texture analysis and spreadability tests were performed. All formulations revealed to be stable in preliminary stability assessment. The formulations containing HERP 1.5 and 2.5% alone or associated with the filters showed intense modifications during accelerated stability test, which were confirmed by rheological analyses. The incorporation of HERP and filters in the poloxamer hydrogel decreased the toughness of product (p < 0.05) and the formulation containing HERP alone presented the lowest adhesivity (p < 0.001). The incorporation of HERP in the hydrogel decreased the poloxamer transition temperature, showing different rheological behavior with the increase of HERP concentration. The developed formulations were stable, exhibited non-Newtonian and pseudoplastic behavior, showing skin compatibility and no skin irritancy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2022.e08893DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8842011PMC
February 2022

Resveratrol and Immune Cells: A Link to Improve Human Health.

Molecules 2022 Jan 10;27(2). Epub 2022 Jan 10.

Department of Biomedical and Dental Science and Morphofunctional Imaging, University of Messina, Via Consolare Valeria, 98125 Messina, Italy.

The use of polyphenols as adjuvants in lowering risk factors for various debilitating diseases has been investigated in recent years due to their possible antioxidant action. Polyphenols represent a fascinating and relatively new subject of research in nutraceuticals and nutrition, with interest rapidly expanding since they can help maintain health by controlling metabolism, weight, chronic diseases, and cell proliferation. Resveratrol is a phenolic compound found mostly in the pulp, peels, seeds, and stems of red grapes. It has a wide variety of biological actions that can be used to prevent the beginning of various diseases or manage their symptoms. Resveratrol can influence multiple inflammatory and non-inflammatory responses, protecting organs and tissues, thanks to its interaction with immune cells and its activity on SIRT1. This compound has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-apoptotic, neuroprotective, cardioprotective, anticancer, and antiviral properties, making it a potential adjunct to traditional pharmaceutical therapy in public health. This review aims to provide a comprehensive analysis of resveratrol in terms of active biological effects and mechanism of action in modifying the immune cellular response to promote human psychophysical health.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/molecules27020424DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8778251PMC
January 2022

Sodium Intake and Related Diseases 2.0.

Int J Mol Sci 2021 Dec 24;23(1). Epub 2021 Dec 24.

CREA-Research Centre for Food and Nutrition, Via Ardeatina 546, 00178 Rome, Italy.

Many statements have been reported in literature from various sources warning of the possible risk to health connected to high salt (as sodium chloride) intake in the everyday diet, and it is increasingly pressing [...].
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms23010170DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8745626PMC
December 2021

Dietary Antioxidants and Metabolic Diseases.

Int J Mol Sci 2021 Nov 22;22(22). Epub 2021 Nov 22.

CREA-Research Centre for Food and Nutrition, Via Ardeatina 546, 00178 Rome, Italy.

[...].
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms222212558DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8622794PMC
November 2021

Fruit Wastes as a Valuable Source of Value-Added Compounds: A Collaborative Perspective.

Molecules 2021 Oct 20;26(21). Epub 2021 Oct 20.

PHYTOLAB (Pharmaceutical, Cosmetic, Food Supplement Technology and Analysis)-DiSIA, Department of Statistics, Computer Science, Applications "G. Parenti", University of Florence, Via U. Schiff, 6-50019 Sesto Fiorentino, 50121 Florence, Italy.

The by-products/wastes from agro-food and in particular the fruit industry represents from one side an issue since they cannot be disposed as such for their impact on the environment but they need to be treated as a waste. However, on the other side, they are a source of bioactive healthy useful compounds which can be recovered and be the starting material for other products in the view of sustainability and a circular economy addressing the global goal of "zero waste" in the environment. An updated view of the state of art of the research on fruit wastes is here given under this perspective. The topic is defined as follows: (i) literature quantitative analysis of fruit waste/by-products, with particular regards to linkage with health; (ii) an updated view of conventional and innovative extraction procedures; (iii) high-value added compounds obtained from fruit waste and associated biological properties; (iv) fruit wastes presence and relevance in updated databases. Nowadays, the investigation of the main components and related bioactivities of fruit wastes is being continuously explored throughout integrated and multidisciplinary approaches towards the exploitation of emerging fields of application which may allow to create economic, environmental, and social value in the design of an eco-friendly approach of the fruit wastes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/molecules26216338DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8586962PMC
October 2021

Mono- and Dicationic DABCO/Quinuclidine Composed Nanomaterials for the Loading of Steroidal Drug: 3 Factorial Design and Physicochemical Characterization.

Nanomaterials (Basel) 2021 Oct 18;11(10). Epub 2021 Oct 18.

Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Coimbra, Pólo das Ciências da Saúde, Azinhaga de Santa Comba, 3000-548 Coimbra, Portugal.

Oil-in-water nanoemulsions (NEs) are considered a suitable nanotechnological approach to improve the eye-related bioavailability of lipophilic drugs. The potential of cationic NEs is prominent due to the electrostatic interaction that occurs between the positively charged droplets with the negatively charged mucins present in the tear film. This interaction offers prolonged NEs residence at the ocular surface, increasing the drug absorption. Triamcinolone acetonide (TA) is one of the first pharmacologic strategies applied as an intravitreal injection in the treatment of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Newly synthesized quaternary derivatives of 1,4-diazabicyclo[2.2.2]octane (DABCO) and quinuclidine surfactants have been screened with the purpose to select the best compound to formulate long-term stable NEs that combine the best physicochemical properties for the loading of TA intended for ocular administration.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nano11102758DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8541651PMC
October 2021

DABCO-Customized Nanoemulsions: Characterization, Cell Viability and Genotoxicity in Retinal Pigmented Epithelium and Microglia Cells.

Pharmaceutics 2021 Oct 10;13(10). Epub 2021 Oct 10.

CEB-Centre of Biological Engineering, Campus de Gualtar, University of Minho, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal.

Quaternary derivatives of 1,4-diazabicyclo[2.2.2]octane (DABCO) and of quinuclidine surfactants were used to develop oil-in-water nanoemulsions with the purpose of selecting the best long-term stable nanoemulsion for the ocular administration of triamcinolone acetonide (TA). The combination of the best physicochemical properties (i.e., mean droplet size, polydispersity index, zeta potential, osmolality, viscoelastic properties, surface tension) was considered, together with the cell viability assays in ARPE-19 and HMC3 cell lines. Surfactants with cationic properties have been used to tailor the nanoemulsions' surface for site-specific delivery of drugs to the ocular structure for the delivery of TA. They are tailored for the eye because they have cationic properties that interact with the anionic surface of the eye.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics13101652DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8537942PMC
October 2021

The Contribution of Extruded and Fermented Wheat Bran to the Quality Parameters of Wheat Bread, Including the Profile of Volatile Compounds and Their Relationship with Emotions Induced for Consumers.

Foods 2021 Oct 18;10(10). Epub 2021 Oct 18.

Department of Food Safety and Quality, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Mickeviciaus Str. 9, LT-44307 Kaunas, Lithuania.

The aim of this study was to evaluate the contribution of extruded and fermented wheat bran (WBex-f) to the quality of wheat bread (BR), including the volatile compounds (VC) profile and VC relationship with emotions induced for consumers. A comparison study of BR (prepared with 5%, 10%, and 15% untreated wheat bran (nWB) and WBex-f) quality parameters was performed. It was established that nWB increases dough hardness and reduces BR specific volume. The addition of 5% and 10% of WBex-f was not significant on BR porosity and led to the formation of a high number of large pores. nWB and WBex-f increases the mass loss of BR after baking (by 13.38%), and the control breads showed the highest crust darkness, yellowness, and redness. nWB and WBex-f reduces BR firmness during storage, and WBex-f increases the overall acceptability (OA) of BR (by 26.2%). A strong positive correlation was found between OA and the emotion 'happy' (r = 0.8696). In BR prepared with WBex-f, a higher content of pyrazine, methyl-; pyrazine, 2-ethyl-; pyrazine, 2-ethyl-6-methyl-; furfural; ethanone, 1-(2-furanyl)-; benzaldehyde; and 3-furanmethanol was found. Finally, it can be stated that WBex-f could prolong the shelf life of BR and leads to the formation of a specific VC profile, which is associated with a higher OA of the product.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/foods10102501DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8535695PMC
October 2021

Bacillus thuringiensis: From biopesticides to anticancer agents.

Biochimie 2022 Jan 12;192:83-90. Epub 2021 Oct 12.

Industrial Biotechnology Program, University of Tiradentes (UNIT), Av. Murilo Dantas, Aracaju, Brazil. Electronic address:

Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) is a ubiquitous bacterium that produces several proteins that are toxic to different invertebrates such as insects, nematodes, mites, and also some protozoans. Among these, Cry and Cyt proteins are most explored as biopesticides for their action against agricultural pests and vectors of human diseases. In 2000, a group of researchers from Japan isolated parasporal inclusion proteins from B. thuringiensis, and reported their cytotoxic action against human leukemia. Later, other proteins with similar antitumor properties were also isolated from this bacterium and these cytotoxic proteins with specific activity against human cancer cells were named parasporins. At present, nineteen different parasporins are registered and classified in six families. These parasporins have been described to have specific in vitro antitumor activity against several cancer cell lines. The antitumor activity makes parasporins possible candidates as anticancer agents. Various research groups around the world are involved in isolating and characterizing in vitro antitumor activity of these proteins and many articles reporting such activities in detail have been published. However, there are virtually no data regarding the antitumor activity of parasporins in vivo. This review summarizes the properties of these potentially useful antitumor agents of natural origin, focusing on their in vivo activity thus also highlighting the importance of testing these proteins in animal models for a possible application in clinical oncology.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biochi.2021.10.003DOI Listing
January 2022

Bee Products: A Representation of Biodiversity, Sustainability, and Health.

Life (Basel) 2021 Sep 15;11(9). Epub 2021 Sep 15.

CREA-Research Centre for Forestry and Wood, via Valle Della Quistione 27, 00166 Rome, Italy.

Biodiversity strengthens the productivity of any ecosystem (agricultural land, forest, lake, etc.). The loss of biodiversity contributes to food and energy insecurity; increases vulnerability to natural disasters, such as floods or tropical storms; and decreases the quality of both life and health. Wild and managed bees play a key role in maintaining the biodiversity and in the recovery and restoration of degraded habitats. The novelty character of this perspective is to give an updated representation of bee products' biodiversity, sustainability, and health relationship. The role of bees as bioindicators, their importance in the conservation of biodiversity, their ecosystem services, and the variety of the bee products are described herein. An overview of the main components of bee products, their biological potentials, and health is highlighted and detailed as follows: (i) nutritional value of bee products, (ii) bioactive profile of bee products and the related beneficial properties; (iii) focus on honey and health through a literature quantitative analysis, and (iv) bee products explored through databases. Moreover, as an example of the interconnection between health, biodiversity, and sustainability, a case study, namely the "Cellulose Park", realized in Rome (Italy), is presented here. This case study highlights how bee activities can be used to assess and track changes in the quality of agricultural ecosystems-hive products could be valid indicators of the quality and health of the surrounding environment, as well as the changes induced by the biotic and abiotic factors that impact the sustainability of agricultural production and biodiversity conservation in peri-urban areas.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/life11090970DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8464958PMC
September 2021

Advantages of Hyaluronic Acid and Its Combination with Other Bioactive Ingredients in Cosmeceuticals.

Molecules 2021 Jul 22;26(15). Epub 2021 Jul 22.

Department of Toxicology, Faculty of Pharmacy, "Iuliu Hațieganu" University of Medicine and Pharmacy, 6 Pasteur Str., 400349 Cluj-Napoca, Romania.

This study proposes a review on hyaluronic acid (HA) known as hyaluronan or hyaluronate and its derivates and their application in cosmetic formulations. HA is a glycosaminoglycan constituted from two disaccharides (N-acetylglucosamine and D-glucuronic acid), isolated initially from the vitreous humour of the eye, and subsequently discovered in different tissues or fluids (especially in the articular cartilage and the synovial fluid). It is ubiquitous in vertebrates, including humans, and it is involved in diverse biological processes, such as cell differentiation, embryological development, inflammation, wound healing, etc. HA has many qualities that recommend it over other substances used in skin regeneration, with moisturizing and anti-ageing effects. HA molecular weight influences its penetration into the skin and its biological activity. Considering that, nowadays, hyaluronic acid has a wide use and a multitude of applications (in ophthalmology, arthrology, pneumology, rhinology, aesthetic medicine, oncology, nutrition, and cosmetics), the present study describes the main aspects related to its use in cosmetology. The biological effect of HA on the skin level and its potential adverse effects are discussed. Some available cosmetic products containing HA have been identified from the brand portfolio of most known manufacturers and their composition was evaluated. Further, additional biological effects due to the other active ingredients (plant extracts, vitamins, amino acids, peptides, proteins, saccharides, probiotics, etc.) are presented, as well as a description of their possible toxic effects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/molecules26154429DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8347214PMC
July 2021

Sodium Intake and Related Diseases.

Int J Mol Sci 2021 Jul 16;22(14). Epub 2021 Jul 16.

Department of Clinical Medicine and Surgery, Federico II University of Naples, Via S. Pansini 5, 80131 Naples, Italy.

Moderation in the use of salt (sodium chloride) in food and food preparations prevents the tendency of blood pressure to increase with age, and this is documented by many studies in current literature [...].
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms22147608DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8304641PMC
July 2021

Plants and Diabetes: Description, Role, Comprehension and Exploitation.

Int J Mol Sci 2021 Apr 11;22(8). Epub 2021 Apr 11.

Department of Pharmacy, University of Napoli Federico II, via D. Montesano 49, 80131 Napoli, Italy.

Many plants have been known for centuries to have medicinal importance with potential beneficial effects on health. Phytotherapeutic compounds are well known to play a globally significant role, in particular in the management and treatment of various chronic diseases. Among these, diabetes can cause long term damage to the body other than having a relevant economic burden on society being among the costliest chronic diseases. This motivated the focus of the proposed Special Issue, intended to develop and exploit the potential role of plants in the management and treatment of diabetes. The main topics included are: (i) description and use of medicinal plants for diabetes management; (ii) the elucidation and delineation of their main components, properties (anti-hyperglycaemic, hypoglicaemic, anti-infiammatory, apoptotic agents, etc.), (iii) the mechanism of action (in vitro and in vivo studies); (iv) formulation of nutraceuticals, botanicals, and dietary supplements useful as tools as an alternative or support to anti-diabetic pharmacological therapies; (v) development of new markers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms22083938DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8070195PMC
April 2021

Oxidative stability of high oleic sunflower oil during deep-frying process of purple potato .

Heliyon 2021 Mar 8;7(3):e06294. Epub 2021 Mar 8.

Department of Pharmacy, University of Napoli Federico II, Via. D. Montesano 49, 80131, Napoli, Italy.

The behaviour of high oleic sunflower oil in deep frying process of purple potato has been evaluated simulating a fast food cooking process. This oil was used for 8h/day for 6 days, filling up from the 2nd day. A discontinuous and prolonged procedure was tested. Free Fatty Acidity (FFA), Peroxide Value (PV), Total Polar Compounds (TPC), Fatty Acid (FA) composition, Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) have been determined at different times in thermo-oxidized (T-OX) oil, and in frying oil. The FFA in T-OX oil samples showed values in the range 0.09%-0.24%, whereas in the frying oil values varied in a range between 0.09% and 0.16%. TPCs values varied from 1.76% to 38.24% in T-OX oils, whereas in frying oil used for frying purple potatoes (FOPP) showed values in the range from 1.76 to 29.13%. The peroxides values did not follow a regular pattern, both during thermo-oxidation and during frying. Among the Long Chain Fatty Acids (LCFAs), oleic acid was the most represented (84.13%). Short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) amount was 0.34% (octanoic acid). Medium chain fatty acids (MCFA) amount was 4.45% (palmitic acid). During the thermo-oxidation, the poly-unsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) amount decreased during the 48 h of heat treatment, reaching an amount of 6.21%. This determined the increase in short chain fatty acids (SCFA). Trans fatty acids increased with the frying time. Unsaturated fatty acids (UFA) reached the value of 90.19%; SFA was 9.79%, and octanoic acid was 0.20%. A correlation between TPC vs UFA/SFA and TPC vs C18:2/C16:0 was observed in the frying oil. The most abundant volatile compounds in frying oil (from 0 to 48 h) were the aldehydes produced by decomposition of hydroperoxides of oleic and linoleic acids.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2021.e06294DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8035487PMC
March 2021

Combination of Extrusion and Fermentation with and Strains for Improving the Safety Characteristics of Wheat Bran.

Toxins (Basel) 2021 02 19;13(2). Epub 2021 Feb 19.

Department of Food Science and Technology, Kaunas University of Technology, Radvilenu Rd. 19, LT-50254 Kaunas, Lithuania.

Processed wheat bran (W) is of great importance for food and feed. Consequently, the biosafety of W should be evaluated and improved with valorisation strategies. This study tested a design combining extrusion (at temperature of 115 and 130 °C; screw speeds of 16, 20, and 25 rpm) and fermentation with and strains for the valorisation of W to provide safer food and feed stock. The influence of different treatments on biogenic amine formation, mycotoxin content, and free amino acids, as well as acidity, microbiological parameters, and sugar concentration, were analysed. This research showed that a combination of extrusion and fermentation with selected strains can change several aspects of W characteristics. There was a significant effect of applied treatments on acidity and the microbiological parameters of W, as well as biogenic amines content. The lowest total mycotoxin concentration (29.8 µg/kg) was found in extruded (130 °C; 25 rpm) and fermented with sample. Finally, the combination of the abovementioned treatments can be confirmed as a prospective innovative pre-treatment for W, capable of potentially enhancing their safety characteristics and composition.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/toxins13020163DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7923204PMC
February 2021

Nanopharmaceuticals for Eye Administration: Sterilization, Depyrogenation and Clinical Applications.

Biology (Basel) 2020 Oct 14;9(10). Epub 2020 Oct 14.

Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Coimbra, Pólo das Ciências da Saúde, Azinhaga de Santa Comba, 3000-548 Coimbra, Portugal.

As an immune-privileged target organ, the eyes have important superficial and internal barriers, protecting them from physical and chemical damage from exogenous and/or endogenous origins that would cause injury to visual acuity or even vision loss. These anatomic, physiological and histologic barriers are thus a challenge for drug access and entry into the eye. Novel therapeutic concepts are highly desirable for eye treatment. The design of an efficient ocular drug delivery system still remains a challenge. Although nanotechnology may offer the ability to detect and treat eye diseases, successful treatment approaches are still in demand. The growing interest in nanopharmaceuticals offers the opportunity to improve ophthalmic treatments. Besides their size, which needs to be critically monitored, nanopharmaceuticals for ophthalmic applications have to be produced under sterilized conditions. In this work, we have revised the different sterilization and depyrogenation methods for ophthalmic nanopharmaceuticals with their merits and drawbacks. The paper also describes clinical sterilization of drugs and the outcomes of inappropriate practices, while recent applications of nanopharmaceuticals for ocular drug delivery are also addressed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/biology9100336DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7602230PMC
October 2020

Neurotensins and their therapeutic potential: research field study.

Future Med Chem 2020 10 9;12(19):1779-1803. Epub 2020 Oct 9.

Institute of Molecular Biology "Roumen Tsanev", Department of Biochemical Pharmacology & Drug Design, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Acad. G. Bonchev Str., Bl. 21, 1113 Sofia, Bulgaria.

The natural tridecapeptide neurotensin has been emerged as a promising therapeutic scaffold for the treatment of neurological diseases and cancer. In this work, we aimed to identify the top 100 most cited original research papers as well as recent key studies related to neurotensins. The Web of Science Core Collection database was searched and the retrieved research articles were analyzed by using the VOSviewer software. The most cited original articles were published between 1973 and 2013. The top-cited article was by Carraway and Leeman reporting the discovery of neurotensin in 1973. The highly cited terms were associated with hypotension and angiotensin-converting-enzyme. The conducted analysis reveals the therapeutic potentials of neurotensin, and further impactful research toward its clinical development is warrantied.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4155/fmc-2020-0124DOI Listing
October 2020

Natural products in diabetes research: quantitative literature analysis.

Nat Prod Res 2021 Dec 7;35(24):5813-5827. Epub 2020 Oct 7.

Institute of Neurobiology, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Bulgaria.

The current study aimed to identify which natural products and which research directions are related to the major contributors to academic journals for diabetes therapy. Bibliometric data were extracted from the Web of Science online database using the search string TOPIC = (''natural product*' OR ''natural compound*' OR ''natural molecule*' OR 'phytochemical*' OR ''secondary metabolite*') AND TS = ('diabet*') and analysed by a bibliometric software, VOSviewer. The search yielded 3694 publications, which were collectively cited 80,791 times, with an H-index of 117 and 21.9 citations per publication on average. The top-contributing countries were India, the USA, China, South Korea and Brazil. Curcumin, flavanone, resveratrol, carotenoid, polyphenols, flavonol, flavone and berberine were the most frequently cited natural products or compound classes. Our results provide a brief overview of the major directions of natural product research in diabetes up to now and hint on promising avenues for future research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14786419.2020.1821019DOI Listing
December 2021

Red Propolis and Its Dyslipidemic Regulator Formononetin: Evaluation of Antioxidant Activity and Gastroprotective Effects in Rat Model of Gastric Ulcer.

Nutrients 2020 Sep 26;12(10). Epub 2020 Sep 26.

University of Tiradentes, Av. Murilo Dantas, 300, Aracaju CEP 49032-490, Sergipe, Brazil.

Propolis has various pharmacological properties of clinical interest, and is also considered a functional food. In particular, hydroalcoholic extracts of red propolis (HERP), together with its isoflavonoid formononetin, have recognized antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, with known added value against dyslipidemia. In this study, we report the gastroprotective effects of HERP (50-500 mg/kg, p.o.) and formononetin (10 mg/kg, p.o.) in ethanol and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug-induced models of rat ulcer. The volume, pH, and total acidity were the evaluated gastric secretion parameters using the pylorus ligature model, together with the assessment of gastric mucus contents. The anti- activities of HERP were evaluated using the agar-well diffusion method. In our experiments, HERP (250 and 500 mg/kg) and formononetin (10 mg/kg) reduced ( < 0.001) total lesion areas in the ethanol-induced rat ulcer model, and reduced ( < 0.05) ulcer indices in the indomethacin-induced rat ulcer model. Administration of HERP and formononetin to pylorus ligature models significantly decreased ( < 0.01) gastric secretion volumes and increased ( < 0.05) mucus production. We have also shown the antioxidant and anti- activities of HERP. The obtained results indicate that HERP and formononetin are gastroprotective in acute ulcer models, suggesting a prominent role of formononetin in the effects of HERP.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nu12102951DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7600383PMC
September 2020

Vicia plants-A comprehensive review on chemical composition and phytopharmacology.

Phytother Res 2021 Feb 15;35(2):790-809. Epub 2020 Sep 15.

Department of Medicine (DIMED), OU Endocrinology, University of Padova, Padova, Italy.

The plants belonging to the genus Vicia are of great interest as a source of many bioactive compounds and micronutrients. A snapshot of their cultivation, habitat, main components, from which essential oils can be obtained, is given. The traditional medicinal uses of Vicia plants are also reported, as well as the wide spectrum of the main biological activities attributed to Vicia plants is discussed regarding potential health beneficial properties, in particular anti-Parkinson, anticholinesterase, antidepressant, anticonvulsant, antimicrobial, cytotoxic, antioxidant, antiinflammatory and antinociceptive, antidiabetic, antihemolytic, anticoagulant, estrogenic, diuretic, antihypoxic activities.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ptr.6863DOI Listing
February 2021

Polymeric Nanoparticles: Production, Characterization, Toxicology and Ecotoxicology.

Molecules 2020 Aug 15;25(16). Epub 2020 Aug 15.

Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Coimbra, Pólo das Ciências da Saúde, Azinhaga de Santa Comba, 3000-548 Coimbra, Portugal.

Polymeric nanoparticles (NPs) are particles within the size range from 1 to 1000 nm and can be loaded with active compounds entrapped within or surface-adsorbed onto the polymeric core. The term "nanoparticle" stands for both nanocapsules and nanospheres, which are distinguished by the morphological structure. Polymeric NPs have shown great potential for targeted delivery of drugs for the treatment of several diseases. In this review, we discuss the most commonly used methods for the production and characterization of polymeric NPs, the association efficiency of the active compound to the polymeric core, and the in vitro release mechanisms. As the safety of nanoparticles is a high priority, we also discuss the toxicology and ecotoxicology of nanoparticles to humans and to the environment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/molecules25163731DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7464532PMC
August 2020

Spray-Dried Structured Lipid Carriers for the Loading of : New Nutraceutical and Food Preservative.

Foods 2020 Aug 13;9(8). Epub 2020 Aug 13.

Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences of Ribeirão Preto, University of São Paulo, Av. do Café s/n, Ribeirão Preto, SP, São Paulo 14040-903, Brazil.

Rosemary, an aromatic herb with significant antioxidative activity, is frequently used as food preservative and a source of nutraceuticals. Its antioxidant effect is mainly related to the presence of phenolic compounds, molecules considerably unstable and prone to irreversible physicochemical changes when exposed to external agents. We here proposed the loading of rosemary into structured lipid systems to improve its physicochemical properties. Four formulations were prepared using the same amount of rosemary lyophilized extract. The lipid phase was composed of stearic acid and oleic acid, and the aqueous phase, a varying combination of drying carriers (whey protein concentrate or gum Arabic) and surfactant (Poloxamer 188). The formulations were sonicated, spray-dried, and the obtained powders were characterized regarding the density (0.18 g/mL to 0.26 g/mL), particle size distribution (7 µm and 52 µm), and water solubility (29% to 48%). The antioxidant activity was determined by applying ABTS radical-scavenging assay and the results expressed per gram of lyophilized extract (150.6 μmol Trolox/g to 376.4 μmol Trolox/g), with a significantly lower/higher result seen for formulations containing gum Arabic and a higher concentration of Poloxamer. The prepared systems may have potential applications as preservative in foodstuff and as nutraceutical.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/foods9081110DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7466245PMC
August 2020

Plants: A Genus Rich in Vital Nutra-pharmaceuticals-A Review.

Iran J Pharm Res 2019 ;18(Suppl1):68-89

Department of Pharmacy, University of Napoli Federico II, Via D. Montesano 49, 80131 Napoli, Italy.

species, known as "Yams," belong to family . This genus consists of more than 600 species distributed from Africa, Asia, the Caribbean's South America, and the South Pacific islands. Their organoleptic properties make them the most widely used carbohydrate food and dietary supplements. The underground and/or aerial tubers represent valuable sources of proteins, fats, and vitamins for millions of people in West Africa. This review gives a shot of secondary metabolites of plants, including steroids, clerodane diterpenes, quinones, cyanidins, phenolics, diarylheptanoids, and nitrogen-containing compounds. This review collected the evidence on biological properties of description , including and studies. species contain promising bioactive molecules diosgenin that support their different biological properties, including antioxidant, hypoglycaemic, hypolipidemic, anti- antimicrobial, inflammatory, antiproliferative, androgenic, estrogenic, and contraceptive drugs. Indeed, besides its nutrient values, is a potential source of bioactive substances of interest in the prevention/treatment of several diseases, and thus represents a great challenge in developing countries. However, ethnomedicinal potential should be validated and further researches on pharmacological properties and phytochemical composition should be carried out. Particularly, doing some studies to convert the preclinical results to clinical efficacy should be guaranteed. Dioscorea, Food plant, Traditional use, Phytochemistry, Pharmacological activities.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.22037/ijpr.2019.112501.13795DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7393038PMC
January 2019

NMR-Based Metabolomic Comparison of (Var. ): Organic and Conventional Farming.

Foods 2020 Jul 17;9(7). Epub 2020 Jul 17.

Department of Chemistry, "Sapienza" University of Rome, Piazzale Aldo Moro 5, 00181 Rome, Italy.

Brassicaceae family provides several crops which are worldwide known for their interesting phytochemical profiles, especially in terms of content of glucosinolates. These secondary metabolites show several beneficial effects toward consumers' health, and several studies have been conducted to identify cultivation factors affecting their content in crops. One of the agronomic practices which is attracting growing interest is the organic one, which consists in avoiding the use of mineral fertilizers as well as pesticides. The aim of this study is to define the metabolic profile of (var. ) and to compare the samples grown using organic and conventional fertilization methods. The hydroalcoholic and organic extracts of the samples have been analyzed by NMR spectroscopy. Forty-seven metabolites belonging to the categories of organic acids, amino acids, carbohydrates, fatty acids, sterols, and other molecules have been identified. Thirty-seven metabolites have been quantified. Univariate and multivariate PCA analyses allowed to observe that the organic practice influenced the nitrogen transport, the carbohydrate metabolism, the glucosinolate content and the phenylpropanoid pathway in (var. ).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/foods9070945DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7404451PMC
July 2020

Properties, Extraction Methods, and Delivery Systems for Curcumin as a Natural Source of Beneficial Health Effects.

Medicina (Kaunas) 2020 Jul 3;56(7). Epub 2020 Jul 3.

Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Coimbra, Pólo das Ciências da Saúde, Azinhaga de Santa Comba, 3000-548 Coimbra, Portugal.

This review discusses the impact of curcumin-an aromatic phytoextract from the turmeric () rhizome-as an effective therapeutic agent. Despite all of the beneficial health properties ensured by curcumin application, its pharmacological efficacy is compromised in vivo due to poor aqueous solubility, high metabolism, and rapid excretion that may result in poor systemic bioavailability. To overcome these problems, novel nanosystems have been proposed to enhance its bioavailability and bioactivity by reducing the particle size, the modification of surfaces, and the encapsulation efficiency of curcumin with different nanocarriers. The solutions based on nanotechnology can improve the perspective for medical patients with serious illnesses. In this review, we discuss commonly used curcumin-loaded bio-based nanoparticles that should be implemented for overcoming the innate constraints of this natural ingredient. Furthermore, the associated challenges regarding the potential applications in combination therapies are discussed as well.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/medicina56070336DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7404808PMC
July 2020
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