Glucosinolates and isothiocyanates in health and disease

Division of Cancer Research, Medical Research Institute, Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, University of Dundee, Dundee DD1 9SY, Scotland, UK.
Trends in Molecular Medicine (Impact Factor: 9.45). 05/2012; 18(6):337-47. DOI: 10.1016/j.molmed.2012.04.003
Source: PubMed


Glucosinolates and isothiocyanates have both been objects of research for more than half a century. Interest in these unique phytochemicals escalated following the discovery that sulforaphane, an isothiocyanate from broccoli, potently induces mammalian cytoprotective proteins through the Keap1-Nrf2-ARE pathway. In parallel with the advances in understanding the molecular regulation of this pathway and its critical role in protection against electrophiles and oxidants, there have been increased efforts toward translating this knowledge to improve human health and combat disease. This review focuses on the animal studies demonstrating the beneficial effects of glucosinolates and isothiocyanates in models of carcinogenesis, and cardiovascular and neurological diseases, as well as on the intervention studies of their safety, pharmacokinetics, and efficacy in humans.

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Available from: Albena T Dinkova-Kostova, Apr 26, 2014
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    • "Isothiocyanates are a family of small molecules characterized by the presence of a –N=C=S group and are extensively investigated for their potential to reduce the risks of chronic diseases, including atherosclerosis and cancer [5]. Epidemiological studies indicate that the human consumption of high quantities of Brassicaceae vegetables reduces the risk of developing lung, breast, prostate, colon, and rectum cancer [6] [7]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Total isothiocyanates content (ITC) is considered a good indicator of bioactive compounds responsible for beneficial effects related to Brassicaceae vegetables. Analytical performance is a critical factor for routine analysis in plant tissues. The extraction technique for isolating phytochemicals from Brassicaceae vegetables is currently the bottleneck of the methodology. The aim of this work was to optimize this step in the analytical process. Fast and less expensive alternative, based on ultrasound-assisted extraction technique (UAE) for direct extraction of GLS into an aqueous phase and further analysis of the hydrolysis product, was optimized. Full factorial ( 2 k ) design followed by Central Composite Design (CCD) was used to obtain the optimum extraction conditions. Selected conditions were homogenization time (9 min); ultrasound bath time (5 min); and sample-to-solvent ratio (1 : 5 w/v mg mL−1). The proposed analytical methodology exhibits satisfactory analytical performance in terms of linearity, precision (RSD < 2.4%), and limits of detection (26 nmol g−1 w.w.). The new analytical methodology was applied to cauliflower, cabbage, watercress, and broccoli samples with recoveries higher than 86%. The UAE extraction technique was showed to be efficient for real samples analysis leading to sensible, selective, and reproducible methodology for ITC analysis.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2015
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    • "Besides glucosinolates , broccoli sprouts are rich in phenolic acids, vitamins (A, C, E, and K), and minerals, making this food an interesting source of healthy compounds (West et al., 2004). Previous work supported the anti-cancer properties of SFN, by in vitro and in vivo studies with humans and animals (Clarke, Dashwood, & Ho, 2008; Dinkova-Kostova, & Kostov, 2012). Additionally, natural antioxidants such as vitamin C, also found in broccoli sprouts, have been related to the reduction of inflammation and oxidative stress (Holt et al., 2009). "
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    ABSTRACT: Current evidence supports the positive association between the consumption of plant foods and health. In this work, we assessed the effect of consuming a half-serving (30 g) or one serving (60 g) of broccoli sprouts on the urinary concentrations of biomarkers of oxidative stress (isoprostanes) and inflammation (prostaglandins and thromboxanes). Twenty-four volunteers participated in the project. A quantitative determination of sulforaphane and its mercapturic derivatives, eicosanoids, and total vitamin C in urine was performed. The intake of broccoli sprouts produced an increase in the urinary concentrations of sulforaphane metabolites and vitamin C. Among the 13 eicosanoids analysed, tetranor-PGEM and 11β-PGF2α as well as 11-dehydro-TXB2 showed a significant decrease in their urinary concentrations after the ingestion of broccoli sprouts. Therefore, the consumption of broccoli sprouts modulated the excretion of biomarkers linked to inflammation and vascular reactions without exerting a significant influence on the oxidation of phospholipids in vivo.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2015 · Food Chemistry
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    • "Rocket salad (Eruca sativa) is a vegetable considered as a good source of glucosinolates, phenolic compounds [1] and unsaturated fatty acids [2]. The potential beneficial effects of such natural products , with respect to several diseases (cancer, cardiovascular and neurological diseases) have been recently reported [3] [4]. Indeed, some of the health promoting and cancer chemoprotective activity of E. sativa and the other cruciferous vegetables is widely believed to be associated to their content of minor dietary components such as glucosinolates [5]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Supercritical fluid extraction from freeze-dried Eruca sativa leaves is assessed with the aim of studying the feasibility to obtain bioactive enriched fractions containing different classes of valuable compounds. Total extraction yields and compositions using pure CO2 and CO2+selected co-solvents are compared. Overall extraction curves, fitted by the model of broken and intact cells developed by Sovová, are reported and the influence of the main parameters that affect the extraction process is analysed. The extract with the highest content in glucosinolates and phenols was collected at 30 MPa and 75°C using 8% (w/w) of water with respect to the CO2 flow rate, whereas the fraction richest in lipids was obtained using 8% (w/w) of ethanol as co-solvent at 45°C and 30 MPa. A process including a first step with supercritical CO2 extraction using water as co-solvent followed by a second step, where a fraction rich in lipids is extracted using ethanol as co-solvent, is proposed. SCCO2 results are compared with Soxhlet and other methods that combine organic solvents with ultrasounds.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2014 · Journal of Supercritical Fluids The
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