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J Agric Food Chem. 2006 Oct 4;54(20):7940-6.

Anthocyanin absorption and antioxidant status in pigs.

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  • 1Institute of Food, Nutrition, and Human Health, Massey University, Private Bag 11 222, Palmerston North, New Zealand.


The effect of a simultaneous intake of food or flavonoids on anthocyanins absorption and antioxidant status in pigs was investigated. Twelve male pigs at 27.1 +/- 0.7 kg BW fitted with jugular venous cannulae were maintained in individual metabolic crates. The animals were each given one of three dietary treatments in random order: blackcurrant powder (BC) to give a dose of 100 mg total ACNs/kg BW mixed either with water and sugar (Diet A), cereal (Weet-Bix), milk, and sugar (Diet B), or cereal, milk, sugar, and an additional flavonol (rutin, approximately 100 mg/kg BW) (Diet C). The four major anthocyanins of BC, delphinidin-3-glucoside, delphinidin-3-rutinoside, cyanidin-3-glucoside, and cyanidin-3-rutinoside, were identified and quantified by HPLC-PDA in all three diets. In the pig plasma, four peaks with a reversed pattern to those of anthocyanins in the BC extract were detected. The total amount of anthocyanins absorbed was not significantly different between the three diets, but the rate of absorption and subsequent decline was slower following administration of diet B and C than diet A. All three diets increased antioxidant capacity when measured by the FRAP assay but not when measured by the ORAC and non-protein ORAC assay. However, the increase was delayed and did not appear until 4 h after ingestion, at a time when plasma anthocyanin levels had returned to baseline. The present study demonstrates that the simultaneous intake of food or other flavonoids delays the absorption profile for anthocyanins. Our results also suggest that the increase in antioxidant capacity is not due to dietary anthocyanins but may be due to metabolites that result from anthocyanin consumption.

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