Natural Products Extracts: Terpenes and Phenolics
Pp. 21-35 (15)
Gutiérrez-Lomelí M., Del Toro-Sánchez C.L., Rodríguez-Sahagún A. and Castellanos-Hernández O.A.
The dependence of mankind upon the plant kingdom goes far beyond the production of food
crops. A great number of plant species produce secondary metabolites that possess valuable properties,
many of which have been studied and applied mainly to the pharmaceutical and food industries. Secondary
metabolites such as terpenes and phenolic acid compounds have become very important due to their
chemical and biological properties and play a major role in plant and human health. Terpenes are the
primary constituents of the essential oils of many types of plants and flowers, and have been extensively
used as natural flavor additives for food, as fragrances in perfumery, and in traditional and alternative
medicines. On the other hand, phenolic acid compounds are plant metabolites widely distributed throughout
the plant kingdom, which have a potential use as natural antioxidants in processed foods. The aim of this
chapter is to provide an overview of the current knowledge on these metabolites regarding their
biosynthesis, main sources and methods for their obtaining and use.
Natural products, terpene, phenolic, coumarin, flavonoid, lignan, stilbene, secondary
metabolites, biological activity, biotechnological production, biosynthesis.
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