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Cardioprotection and natural polyphenols: an update of clinical and experimental studies


Myocardial ischemia is the leading cause of death worldwide. Despite better outcomes with early coronary artery reperfusion strategies, morbidity and mortality remain significant. The principal myocardial hallmark of myocardial ischemia is the cell death and associated impairment of cardiac contractility. In this way, the use of extracts from medicinal plants versus synthetic drugs to mitigate the post-ischemic damage constitutes an alternative. Despite of its proved beneficial effects in cardiovascular disorders, the use of many plants is questioned. Our aim is to update the clinical and experimental studies about the actions of medicinal plants and polyphenol-enriched extracts against ischemia-reperfusion injury and involved mechanisms. A review of recent scientific literature (ten last years) about cardioprotective medicinal plants was developed using the following bibliographic databases: PubMed, Scopus, Web of Knowledge and Google Scholar. Herein, the clinical and experimental studies on medicinal plants and their phenolic compounds have been reviewed. The second part of this review was centered on the search for medicinal plant extracts and natural products isolated from them as potential cardioprotective agents. The botanical names of the cited plants have been authenticated searching the Plant List and Royal Botanical Garden, Kew databases. The data collected show that the treatment with natural products diminishes the post-ischemic damage through an improvement of mitochondrial functionality mainly mediated by an enhanced nitric oxide bioavailability. Despite these results, further studies must be carried out to validate their use to prevent or mitigate the ischemia-reperfusion injury in the clinical setting.

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Publication details

The article was received on 02 Jul 2018, accepted on 22 Oct 2018 and first published on 23 Oct 2018

Article type: Review Article
DOI: 10.1039/C8FO01307A
Citation: Food Funct., 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Cardioprotection and natural polyphenols: an update of clinical and experimental studies

    L. F. González Arbeláez, A. Ciocci Pardo, J. C. Fantinelli, G. Schinella, S. M. Mosca and J. L. Ríos, Food Funct., 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8FO01307A

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