, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp 171-185,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 15 Apr 2012

Therapeutic importance of sulfated polysaccharides from seaweeds: updating the recent findings

Abstract

Seaweeds, being prolific sources of bioactive components have garnered unprecedented interest in recent times. The complex polysaccharides from the brown, red and green seaweeds possess broad spectrum therapeutic properties. Especially, the sulfated polysaccharides, viz. fucans, carrageenans and ulvans have exhibited strong antioxidant, antitumor, immunostimulatory, anti-inflammatory, pulmonary fibrosis anticoagulant/antithrombotic, lipid lowering, antiviral, antibacterial, antiprotozoan, hyperplasia prevention, gastrointestinal, regenerative and nano medicine applications. Considering the immense biomedical prospects of sulfated polysaccharides, the profound and emerging functional properties published in recent times will be discussed here with experimental evidences. The limitations of the seaweed-derived sulfated polysaccharides in healthcare will be summarized. Strategies to maximize extraction and bioavailability will be pondered.