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Current Pharmaceutical Design


ISSN (Print): 1381-6128
ISSN (Online): 1873-4286

Research Article

Profile of Fatty Acids, Tocopherols, Phytosterols and Polyphenols in Mediterranean Oils (Argan Oils, Olive Oils, Milk Thistle Seed Oils and Nigella Seed Oil) and Evaluation of their Antioxidant and Cytoprotective Activities

Author(s): Amira Zarrouk, Lucy Martine, Stéphane Grégoire, Thomas Nury, Wiem Meddeb, Emmanuelle Camus, Asmaa Badreddine, Philippe Durand, Amira Namsi, Aline Yammine, Boubker Nasser, Mondher Mejri, Lionel Bretillon, John J. Mackrill, Mustapha Cherkaoui-Malki, Mohamed Hammami and Gérard Lizard*

Volume 25 , Issue 15 , 2019

Page: [1791 - 1805] Pages: 15

DOI: 10.2174/1381612825666190705192902

Price: $65


Background: The effects of vegetable oils on human health depend on their components. Therefore, their profiles of lipid nutrients and polyphenols were determined.

Objective: To establish and compare the fatty acid, tocopherol, phytosterol and polyphenol profiles of Mediterranean oils: cosmetic and dietary argan oils (AO; Morocco: Agadir, Berkane); olive oils (OO; Morocco, Spain, Tunisia); milk thistle seed oils (MTSO; Tunisia: Bizerte, Sousse, Zaghouane); nigella seed oil (NSO).

Methods: The biochemical profiles were determined by gas chromatography-flame ionization, high performance liquid chromatography and gas chromatography, coupled with mass spectrometry as required. The antioxidant and cytoprotective activities were evaluated with the KRL (Kit Radicaux Libres) and the fluorescein diacetate tests on nerve cells treated with 7-ketocholesterol (7KC).

Results: The fatty acid profile revealed high linoleic acid (C18:2 n-6) content in AO, OO, MTSO and NSO. The highest levels of oleic acid (C18:1 n-9) were found in AO and OO. The tocopherol profile showed that Agadir AO contained the highest amount of α-tocopherol, also present at high level in MTSO and Tunisian OO; Berkane AO was rich in γ-tocopherol. The phytosterol profile indicated that β-sitosterol was predominant in the oils, except AO; spinasterol was only present in AO. Polyphenol profiles underlined that OO was the richest in polyphenols; hydroxytyrosol was only found in OO; few polyphenols were detected in AO. The oils studied have antioxidant activities, and all of them, except NSO, prevented 7KC-induced cell death. The antioxidant characteristics of AO were positively correlated with procatechic acid and compestanol levels.

Conclusion: Based on their biochemical profiles, antioxidant and cytoprotective characteristics, AO, OO, and MTSO are potentially beneficial to human health.

Keywords: Mediterranean oils, fatty acids, tocopherols, polyphenols, phytosterols, antioxidant properties, cytoprotective activities.

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