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Int Arch Allergy Immunol. 2004 May;134(1):17-28. Epub 2004 Mar 25.

Tea polyphenols inhibit acetyl-CoA:1-alkyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine acetyltransferase (a key enzyme in platelet-activating factor biosynthesis) and platelet-activating factor-induced platelet aggregation.

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Department of Pharmaco-Biochemistry, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Shizuoka, Shizuoka, Japan.



Tea extracts have antiallergic and anti-inflammatory actions in rats and mice. However the mechanism through which tea polyphenols act in vivo are still incompletely understood. We found inhibitory effects of black tea extracts on an fMLP-induced aggregating response in a rabbit platelet-polymorphonuclear leukocyte (PMN) system.


To elucidate whether 1-alkyl-2-acetyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (PAF) production in PMNs and/or PAF-stimulated platelet activation were inhibited, the effects of tea polyphenols were investigated on the enzyme activity of acetyl-CoA:1-alkyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine acetyltransferase (EC, PAF biosynthesis in A23187-activated rabbit PMNs, and rabbit platelet aggregation. By comparing the inhibitory effects of 31 galloyl esters and gallic acid, the structure-inhibitory activity relationship was characterized.


Theaflavin and its galloyl esters and pentagalloyl glucose were found to be potent inhibitors of the acetyltransferase (IC(50) = 28-58 microM) and the PAF biosynthesis as well as (-)-epicatechin-3-O-gallate (IC(50) = 72 +/- 13 microM) and (-)-epigallocatechin-3-O-gallate (IC(50) = 46 +/- 6 microM). On the other hand, flavan-3-ols without galloyl group at C-3 and gallic acid did not show significant enzyme inhibition. In addition, theaflavin and its galloyl esters (IC(50) = 32-77 microM) and geranyl gallate, farnesyl gallate and geranylgeranyl gallate (IC(50) = 6.4-7.6 microM) were found to be potent inhibitors of PAF- and TPA-induced rabbit platelet aggregation but not A23187-induced aggregation.


Theaflavin and its galloyl esters in black tea extract, and isoprenyl gallates were potent inhibitors of PAF synthesis and platelet aggregation and these activities may be relevant to the claimed therapeutic effects of tea extracts.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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