Antioxidants protect the body from various disease conditions through their ability to neutralize the effects of free radicals. Synthetic antioxidants are extensively used in processed foods for prevention of oxidation and retention of sensory quality. Consumer awareness and preference has led to a vigorous interest in the search for natural antioxidants. Sesamin and sesamolin, the major lignans present in sesame oil, are known for their antioxidative properties. Roasted sesame oil has a higher concentration of sesamol, the thermally degraded product of sesamolin, which is considered a more potent antioxidant compared to its parent molecule. The isolated lignans and sesamol were tested for their antioxidant, free radical scavenging and antibacterial properties. Sesamol is the best antioxidant and free radical scavenger amongst the molecules studied with IC50 value of 5.44 μg / mL (DPPH radical scavenging activity). Antibacterial assays against food borne pathogens revealed sesamol to be an antimicrobial agent with minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) of 2 mg /mL in the culture. Its activity was synergistic with γ-tocopherol, also present in sesame seeds. Inhibition of browning (60–65 %) in fruit pulps (apple, banana and potato) was observed in presence of 20 μM sesamol.
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The authors wish to thank Director, CSIR-CFTRI, for his keen interest in the work. CMK is grateful for the fellowship awarded by Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, India. This work was funded by the Department of Biotechnology, Govt. of India, New Delhi.
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Mahendra Kumar, C., Singh, S.A. Bioactive lignans from sesame (Sesamum indicum L.): evaluation of their antioxidant and antibacterial effects for food applications. J Food Sci Technol 52, 2934–2941 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13197-014-1334-6
- Free radicals
- Antimicrobial activity