Olive oil is the major source of mono-unsaturated fatty acids in the Mediterranean basin. It has been demonstrated that several olive components play an important role in human health. Among these components, polyphenols play a very important role. They are responsible for olive oil stability and sensory attributes. Moreover, they have pharmacological properties, are natural antioxidants and inhibit the proliferation of many pathogen microorganisms. Studies in vitro have demonstrated that hydroxytyrosol scavenges free radicals, inhibits human low-density lipoprotein (LDL) oxidation which is a process involved in the pathogenesis of the atherosclerosis, inhibits platelet aggregation and discloses anticancer activity on cancer cells by means of pro-apoptotic mechanisms. It has also been demonstrated that hydroxytyrosol acts in vitro against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, which are involved in many infections of respiratory and intestinal tracts. In this review, the most recent patents developed to improve technologies for recovering of antioxidant compounds of olive oil, olive oil industrial by products and waste-waters have been presented.
Keywords: Olive oil, olive polyphenols, tyrosol, hydroxytyrosol, oleuropein, waste waters
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