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Characterisation of grape and grape pomace polyphenolics: their absorption and metabolism and potential effects on hypertension in a SHR rat model

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  • Q Science (General)
  • Rm Therapeutics. Pharmacology
  • Biology


This study investigated the beneficial potential effects of grape pomaces obtained after winemaking of different Mediterranean grape varieties from crude materials to their in vivo effectiveness. Grapes and their respective grape pomaces from six different V. vinifera L. cultivar were studied namely Grenache (from two different locations [GRE1 and GRE2]), Syrah (from two different locations [SYR1 and SYR2]), Carignan (CAR), Mourvèdre (MOU), Counoise (COU) and Alicante (ALI) grape varieties from the Rhône Valley. The comparison of several wine industry by-products with their respective grapes provided evidence that pomace remaining at the end of the winemaking process can be very rich sources of antioxidants. The quantitative and qualitative distribution of polyphenols by HPLC-PDA-Fluo-MS in grape pomaces showed significant differences through varieties and vintages varying from 15% to 70% of polyphenols extracted. Seeds from Grenache (GRE1), Syrah (SYR1) and skins from Syrah (SYR1), Carignan and Alicante were of particular interest because of their higher polyphenol contents in terms of flavan-3-ols (monomers, dimers and trimers) up to 8.7 mg/g DW and anthocyanins (glycosides, acetylated and coumaroylated derivatives up to 17.40, 1.57 and 2.38 mg/g DW, respectively). The investigation of aqueous and hydro-alcoholic 70% extracts of seeds from Carignan and Syrah (SYR1) and skins from Carignan and Alicante was carried out as they contained high levels of total phenols and antioxidant activity. Several extracts, were tested in order to evaluate their in vivo biological effects on hypertension using a spontaneously hypertensive rat (SHR) model. A series of different grape pomace extracts were tested in association with verapamil. All in vivo experiments demonstrated that some grape pomace extracts administrated with or without co-ingestion with verapamil possessed an anti-hypertensive activity. This was evident with GRE1 (EA70) seed pomace extract, SYR1 (EA70) seed pomace extract, ALI (EA70) skin pomace extract administrated alone and with GRE1 (EA70) seed pomace extract, SYR1 (EAQ) seed pomace extract, ALI (EA70) skin pomace extract and SYR2 (EAQ) skin pomace extract administrated in association with verapamil. Grape pomace extracts with or without co-ingestion with verapamil were absorb as phase II metabolites mainly including glucuronide, O-methyl glucuronide, sulfate, and O-methyl sulfate derivatives of (epi)catechin which arise from the metabolism of monomeric flavan-3-ols. The detection by HPLC-PDA-Fluo-MSn and GC-MS of microbial-derived metabolites of flavan-3-ols, hydroxyphenyl-γ-valerolactones in their glucuronide and sulfate forms confirmed the absorption of metabolites derived from both monomeric and polymeric flavan-3-ols from grape pomace extracts and subsequent post-absorption conjugation. Numerous metabolites derived from further microbial degradation of hydroxyvalerolactones were also detected. The urinary excretion of these metabolites accounted for a larger proportion of the total polyphenol ingested than phase II metabolites of monomeric flavan-3-ols, indicating the important role of intestinal bacteria in the metabolism of polymerized procyanidins. All these metabolites may have exerted biological effects during the period in which they circulated in the bloodstream. This study constitutes the first step of assessing grape pomace as an enhancer of the verapamil, an anti-hypertensive drug. Substantial levels of polyphenols, especially flavan-3-ols, procyanidins and anthocyanins, remain in pomace after the winemaking process in quantities sufficient to exert anti-hypertensive effects. In addition, according to the extract used and its composition, it is feasible to modulate anti-hypertensive effects by amplifying or decreasing polyphenols and/or verapamil absorption.

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