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J Agric Food Chem. 2007 Feb 21;55(4):1491-500. Epub 2007 Jan 23.

In vitro studies on the binding, antioxidant, and cytotoxic actions of punicalagin.

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Fruit and Vegetable Technology Department, Central Food Technological Research Institute, Mysore 570 020, India.


The protective bioactivity of punicalagin, a high molecular weight polyphenol isolated from pomegranate fruit pith and carpellary membrane, against oxidative damages to lipids, amino acids constituting the proteins, and guanosine as a model for DNA has been investigated. The ABTS*-, guanosine, and tryptophan radical generated pulse radiolytically were repaired by punicalagin, k = (0.9-15) x 10(7) dm3 mol-1 s-1. The results are rationalized on the basis of the scavenging activity of punicalagin against various one-electron oxidizing radicals, namely, .OH, N3., and NO2. . The formation of the transient species in these reactions and the rate constants of the scavenging reactions have been probed using a time-resolved kinetic spectrophotometric technique. The antioxidant action of punicalagin is expressed not only through its scavenging reactions but also by its ability to form metal chelates. Binding of punicalagin with bovine serum albumin and metal ions such as iron and copper revealed different binding affinities, whereas its binding with DNA was very weak and nonspecific. In vitro cytotoxic studies against three cell lines, namely, Vero (normal African green monkey kidney cell line), Hep-2 (human larynx epithelial cancer cell line), and A-549 (human small cell lung carcinoma cell line) showed that this polyphenol is toxic only at higher concentration.

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