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A comparison of the effects of oleuropein and its derivative from olive oil, oleacein, on functions of human neutrophils
Polyphenols extracted from extra virgin olive oil are believed to play a vital role in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. However the precise mechanisms by which they exert this effect have not been completely defined. Taking into account that neutrophils are suggested to be involved in the mechanism of vascular and heart diseases , we have analyzed the effect of oleuropein and its derivative from olive oil oleacein (3,4-DHPEA-EDA) in a concentration range 10–100µM on neutral endopeptidase (NEP) activity, elastase release, MMP-9 and IL-8 production in stimulated neutrophils and L-selectin expression in unstimulated neutrophils. Oleacein was the inhibitor of NEP activity (IC50=43.2±4.0µM) and L-selectin expression (IC50=7.3±1.8µM) in contrast to oleuropein, which was not active. The inhibition of MMP-9 and IL-8 production and elastase release was comparable for both compounds (15–35%).
Oleacein, as the constituent of extra virgin olive oil, inhibits NEP activity and L-selectin expression more strongly than oleuropein and modulates other functions of neutrophils, which may explain the role of olive oil in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases, in particular those associated with inflammation.
References: 1. Ernst, E, et al. (1987) JAMA 257: 2318–2324.