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J Agric Food Chem. 2007 Dec 12;55(25):10200-7. Epub 2007 Nov 14.

Chemical characterization of red wine grape (Vitis vinifera and Vitis interspecific hybrids) and pomace phenolic extracts and their biological activity against Streptococcus mutans.

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  • 1Eastman Department of Dentistry and Center for Oral Biology, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, New York 14620, USA.


Grapes are rich sources of potentially bioactive polyphenols. However, the phenolic content is variable depending on grape variety, and may be modified during vinification. In this study, we examined the chemical composition and biological activity of phenolic extracts prepared from several red wine grape varieties and their fermented byproduct of winemaking (pomace) on some of the virulence properties of Streptococcus mutans a well-known dental pathogen. Grape phenolic extracts were obtained from Vitis vinifera varieties Cabernet Franc and Pinot Noir and Vitis interspecific hybrid varieties Baco Noir and Noiret. The anthocyanins and flavan-3-ols content were highly variable depending on grape variety and type of extract (whole fruit vs fermented pomace). Nevertheless, all grape phenolic extracts remarkably inhibited glucosyltransferases B and C (70-85% inhibition) at concentrations as low as 62.5 microg/mL (P < 0.01). Furthermore, the glycolytic pH-drop by S. mutans cells was inhibited by the grape extracts without affecting the bacterial viability; an effect that can be attributed to partial inhibition of F-ATPase activity (30-65% inhibition at 125 microg/mL; P < 0.01). The biological activity of fermented pomace was either as effective as or significantly better than whole fruit grape extracts. The results showed that grape phenolic extracts, especially from pomace, are highly effective against specific virulence traits of S. mutans despite major differences in their phenolic content.

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