Food Science and Biotechnology

, Volume 27, Issue 4, pp 957–962 | Cite as

Intensifying sulforaphane formation in broccoli sprouts by using other cruciferous sprouts additions

  • Hao Liang
  • Yongqin Wei
  • Ruimin Li
  • Li Cheng
  • Qipeng Yuan
  • Fuping ZhengEmail author


Sulforaphane is a significant chemopreventive compound which is the predominant glucosinolate in broccoli sprouts. However, the existence of the epithiospecifier protein could direct the hydrolysis of glucosinolates toward sulforaphane nitrile formation instead of sulforaphane. Therefore, the study aimed on improving the yielding of sulforaphane in broccoli sprouts with a new method of the united hydrolysis of cruciferous sprouts. According to the results, the addition of radish, rocket and rape sprouts to broccoli sprouts could promote the hydrolysis of the glucoraphanin to anticancer effective sulforaphane to 2.03, 2.32 and 1.95-fold, respectively, compared to single broccoli sprouts. Meanwhile, the formation of non-bioactive sulforaphane nitrile in these three groups decreased greatly. However, the addition of mustard sprouts had no positive effect. These observations could make a contribution to the potential chemoprotective effects of broccoli sprouts.


Broccoli sprouts Sulforaphane Glucoraphanin Addition Hydrolysis 



Epithiospecifier protein


Trifluoroacetic acid


High performance liquid chromatography/quadrupole-time of flight mass spectrometer


Gas chromatography



This work was supported by the fund of the Beijing Laboratory for Food Quality and Safety (Beijing Technology and Business University), the Beijing Natural Science Foundation (2162030), the Beijing Natural Science Foundation-Beijing Municipal Education Commission Joint Funding project (KZ201710020014), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (21606014), the Double First-rate Program (ylkxj03) and the 111 Project (B13005).

Supplementary material

10068_2018_347_MOESM1_ESM.docx (214 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 214 kb)


  1. 1.
    Ambrosone, C.B., McCann, S.E., Freudenheim, J.L., Marshall, J.R., Zhang, Y., and Shields, P.G. Breast cancer risk in premenopausal women is inversely associated with consumption of Broccoli, a source of isothiocyanates, but is not modified by GST genotype. Nutrition. 134: 1134–1138 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Lippmann, D., Lehmann, C., Florian, S., Barknowitz, G., Haack, M., Mewis, I., Wiesner, M., Schreiner, M., Glatt, H., Brigelius-Flohé, R., and Kipp, A.P. Glucosinolates from pak choi and broccoli induce enzymes and inhibit inflammation and colon cancer differently. Food and Function 5:1073–1081 (2014)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Wang, N., Shen, L., Qiu, S., Wang, X., Wang, K., Hao, J., and Xu, M. Analysis of the isothiocyanates present in three Chinese Brassica vegetable seeds and their potential anticancer bioactivities. European Food Research and Technology. 231: 951–958 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Hanschen, F. S., & Schreiner, M. Isothiocyanates, nitriles, and epithionitriles from glucosinolates are affected by genotype and developmental stage in Brassica oleracea varieties. Front Plant Sci. 8: 1095 (2017)CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Vaughn, SF. and Berhow, MA. Glucosinolate hydrolysis products from various plant sources: pH effects, isolation, and purification. Industrial Crops and Products. 21: 193–202 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Radošević, K., Srček, V.G., Bubalo, M.C., Brnčić, S.R., Takács, K., and Redovniković, I.R. Assessment of glucosinolates, antioxidative and antiproliferative activity of broccoli and collard extracts. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis. 61: 59–66 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Zhang, Y. and Tang, L. Discovery and development of sulforaphane as a cancer chemopreventive phytochemical. Acta Pharmacologica Sinica. 28: 1343–1354 (2007)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Liang, H., Lai, B., and Yuan, Q. Sulforaphane induces cell-cycle arrest and apoptosis in cultured human lung adenocarcinoma LTEP-A2 cells and retards growth of LTEP-A2 xenografts in vivo. Journal of Natural Products. 71: 1911–1914 (2008)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Li, R., Song, D., Vriesekoop, F., Cheng, L., Yuan, Q., and Liang, H. Glucoraphenin, sulforaphene, and antiproliferative capacity of radish sprouts in germinating and thermal processes. European Food Research and Technology. 243: 547–554 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Hoffmann and Bremer, S. Modulation of drug metabolizing enzymes by dietary doses of sulforaphane; role in its anti-hypertensive and anti-oxidant effect in spontaneously hypertensive rats. Journal of Clinical Toxicology. 6: (2016)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Angeloni, C., Leoncini, E., Malaguti, M., Angelini, S., Hrelia, P., and Hrelia, S. modulation of phase II enzymes by sulforaphane: implications for its cardioprotective potential. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 57: 5615–5622 (2009)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Bahadoran, Z., Mirmiran, P., and Azizi, F. Potential efficacy of broccoli sprouts as a unique supplement for management of type 2 diabetes and its complications. Journal of Medicinal Food. 16: 375–382 (2013)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Matusheski, N.V. and Jeffery, E.H. Comparison of the bioactivity of two glucoraphanin hydrolysis products found in broccoli, sulforaphane and sulforaphane nitrile. Journal of Agricultural & Food Chemistry. 49: 5743–5749 (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Matusheski, N.V., Swarup, R., Juvik, J.A., Mithen, R., Bennett, M., and Jeffery, E.H. Epithiospecifier Protein from Broccoli (Brassica oleracea L. ssp. italica) Inhibits Formation of the Anticancer Agent Sulforaphane. Journal of Agriculturaland Food Chemistry. 54: 2069–2076 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Wang, G.C., Farnham, M., and Jeffery, E.H. Impact of thermal processing on sulforaphane yield from Broccoli (Brassica oleracea L. ssp. italica). Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 60: 6743–6748 (2012)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Dosz, E.B. and Jeffery, E.H. Modifying the processing and handling of frozen broccoli for increased sulforaphane formation. Journal of Food Science. 58: 1459–1463 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Clarke, J.D., Hsu, A., Riedl, K., Bella, D., Schwartz, S.J., Stevens, J.F., and Ho, E. Bioavailability and inter-conversion of sulforaphane and erucin in human subjects consuming broccoli sprouts or broccoli supplement in a cross-over study design. Pharmacological Research. 64: 456–463 (2011)CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Song, D., Liang, H., Kuang, P., Tang, P., Hu, G., and Yuan, Q. Instability and structural change of 4-Methylsulfinyl-3-butenyl isothiocyanate in the hydrolytic process. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 61: 5097–5102 (2013)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Guo, L., Yang, R., Wang, Z., Guo, Q., and Gu, Z. Glucoraphanin, sulforaphane and myrosinase activity in germinating broccoli sprouts as affected by growth temperature and plant organs. Journal of Functional Foods. 5: 70–77 (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Judson, H.G. and Barrell, G.K. The incidence of goitre in newborn lambs from ewes fed fodder radish, rape or Italian ryegrass with or without iodine supplementation. Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production. 71: 66–70 (2011)Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Ghawi, S.K., Methven, L., and Niranjan, K. The potential to intensify sulforaphane formation in cooked broccoli (Brassica oleracea var. italica) using mustard seeds (Sinapis alba). Food Chemistry. 138: 1734–1741 (2013)CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Korean Society of Food Science and Technology and Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hao Liang
    • 1
  • Yongqin Wei
    • 1
  • Ruimin Li
    • 1
  • Li Cheng
    • 1
  • Qipeng Yuan
    • 1
  • Fuping Zheng
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.State Key laboratory of Chemical Resource EngineeringBeijing University of Chemical TechnologyBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Beijing Laboratory for Food Quality and SafetyBeijing Technology and Business UniversityBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

Personalised recommendations