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Molecular mechanisms of inflammation : anti-inflammatory benefits of virgin olive oil and the phenolic compound oleocanthal

journal contribution
posted on 01.01.2011, 00:00 authored by Lisa Parkinson, Aaron RussellAaron Russell, Russell KeastRussell Keast
Chronic inflammation is a critical factor in the pathogenesis of many inflammatory disease states including cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, degenerative joint diseases and neurodegenerative diseases. Chronic inflammatory states are poorly understood, however it is known that dietary habits can evoke or attenuate inflammatory responses. Popular methods to deal with inflammation and its associated symptoms involve the use of non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, however the use of these drugs are associated with severe side effects. Therefore, investigations concerned with natural methods of inflammatory control are warranted. A traditional Mediterranean diet has been shown to confer some protection against the pathology of chronic diseases through the attenuation of proinflammatory mediators and this has been partially attributed to the high intake of virgin olive oil accompanying this dietary regime. Virgin olive oil contains numerous phenolic compounds that exert potent anti-inflammatory actions. Of interest to this paper is the recently discovered phenolic compound oleocanthal. Oleocanthal is contained in virgin olive oil and possesses similar anti-inflammatory properties to ibuprofen. This pharmacological similarity has provoked interest in oleocanthal and the few studies conducted thus far have verified its anti-inflammatory and potential therapeutic actions. A review of the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet and antiinflammatory properties of virgin olive oil is presented with the additional emphasis on the pharmacological and anti-inflammatory properties of the phenolic compound oleocanthal.

History

Journal

Current pharmaceutical design

Volume

17

Issue

8

Pagination

754 - 768

Publisher

Bentham Science Publishers

Location

Bussum, The Netherlands

ISSN

1381-6128

eISSN

1873-4286

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal; C Journal article

Copyright notice

2011, Bentham Science Publishers Ltd.