Phytochemicals enriched in spices: a source of natural epigenetic therapy

Abstract

Metabolic disorders are increasing at an alarming rate due to the stressful lifestyle and inappropriate diet schedule. The unorganized habits influence multiple epigenetic mechanisms like DNA methylation, histone post-translational modifications and miRNA expression. These epigenetic modifications are reversible in nature and regulate gene expression in response to external stimuli without altering the DNA sequence. Dietary herbs are enriched in various phytochemicals which additionally provide nutrition and health benefits; and are known to target these epigenetic gene regulatory mechanisms. They have been in use since human civilization for their health-promoting effects. Culinary spices and condiments which are generally used to enhance the taste of food are rich repositories of many phytochemicals which provides them their unique aroma. Considerable attention has been given to “Nutri-epigenetics” nowadays, with a focus on evaluating the potential of phytochemicals to regulate/neutralize various epigenetic modifications. This article aims at highlighting the epigenetic regulatory roles of phytochemicals present in condiments and spices with considerable health benefits.

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Gupta, J., Sharma, S., Sharma, N.R. et al. Phytochemicals enriched in spices: a source of natural epigenetic therapy. Arch. Pharm. Res. 43, 171–186 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12272-019-01203-3

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Keywords

  • Epigenetics
  • Spices
  • DNA methylation
  • Histone modifications
  • miRNA
  • Phytochemicals