Neurochemical Research

, Volume 33, Issue 12, pp 2390–2400 | Cite as

Benefits from Dietary Polyphenols for Brain Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease

  • L. Rossi
  • S. Mazzitelli
  • M. Arciello
  • C. R. Capo
  • G. Rotilio
Original Paper

Abstract

Brain aging and the most diffused neurodegenerative diseases of the elderly are characterized by oxidative damage, redox metals homeostasis impairment and inflammation. Food polyphenols can counteract these alterations in vitro and are therefore suggested to have potential anti-aging and brain-protective activities, as also indicated by the results of some epidemiological studies. Despite the huge and increasing amount of the in vitro studies trying to unravel the mechanisms of action of dietary polyphenols, the research in this field is still incomplete, and questions about bioavailability, biotransformation, synergism with other dietary factors, mechanisms of the antioxidant activity, risks inherent to their possible pro-oxidant activities are still unanswered. Most of all, the capacity of the majority of these compounds to cross the blood–brain barrier and reach brain is still unknown. This commentary discusses recent data on these aspects, particularly focusing on effects of curcumin, resveratrol and catechins on Alzheimer’s disease.

Keywords

Aging Brain Oxidative stress Polyphenols Alzheimer’s disease Copper 

List of abbreviations

AD

Alzheimer’s disease

ApoE4

Allele 4 of apolipoprotein E gene

APP

Amyloid precursor protein

ARE

Antioxidant responsive element

β-Amyloid polypeptide

BACE

β-Secretase

BBB

Blood–brain barrier

CSF

Cerebrospinal fluid

EGCG

Epigallocatechin-3-gallate

fAD

familial Alzheimer’s disease

HNE

4-Hydroxy-2-trans-nonenal

IL-1β

Interleukin-1β

iNOS

inducible nitric oxide synthase

IRE

Iron-responsive element

MAPK

Mitogen-activated protein kinase

MPTP

N-Methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine

NFkB

Nuclear factor kappa B

nNOS

neuronal nitric oxide synthase

PCK

Protein kinase C

RNS

Reactive nitrogen species

ROS

Reactive oxygen species

sAD

sporadic Alzheimer’s disease

SIN-1

3-Morpholinosydnonimine

SNP

Sodium nitroprusside

TBARS

Thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances

TNF-α

Tumor necrosis factor-α

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. Rossi
    • 1
    • 2
  • S. Mazzitelli
    • 1
  • M. Arciello
    • 1
  • C. R. Capo
    • 1
  • G. Rotilio
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of BiologyTor Vergata University of RomeRomeItaly
  2. 2.Consorzio Interuniversitario “Istituto Nazionale Biostrutture e Biosistemi” (I.N.B.B.)RomeItaly
  3. 3.Research Center IRCCS S. Raffaele PisanaRomeItaly

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