Development of natural products standardized on polyphenols content by bioavailability studies

Acronim: HYPCUM

Description of the proposal:

The polyphenolic category of chemical compounds (hypericin, coumarin, quercetin, anthocianins, etc.) includes a large number of natural and synthetic derivatives. Part of them are characterized in the literature on the basis of their antioxidant potential, the most important being considered natural polyphenolic derivatives.
The proposed project aims to identification and standardization of the vegetal material (Hyperici herba and Meliloti herba) necessar for the active compound extraction (hypericin and coumarin). In a first step, a physico-chemical characterization of these compounds in different solvents and artificial membranary systems is useful. Also, a molecular modelling step for the structure-activity correlation of the polyphenolic compounds is necessary. It is very important that the chosen compounds are fluorescent, because they are easy to evidence as biological markers, being traced in artificial and naturally occurring systems. Studies of polyphenols effects at the membrane level imply both biophysical and biochemical approaches. An important part of this project is represented by the study of toxic dose in treated animals. In order to predict suitability and safety of the natural product usage, containing this type of active compounds, we propose a range of preclinic studies on normal animals, with a detailed approach of the bioavailability aspects.
Bioavailability studies involve plasmatic and urinary quantification of polyphenols and their metabolites, after the oral dosage of the dry standardized extract. In this context, the study of naturally occurring polyphenolic derivatives is interesting, because medicinal plants offers a inexhaustible resource of biologically active compounds, with reduced side effects. Thus, our project can be subscribed to the technological platform Plants for the future.