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Biological functionality of ellagic acid: a review

Vattem, D.A., Shetty, K.
Journal of food biochemistry 2005 v.29 no.3 pp. 234-266
fruits (food), vegetables, food composition, phytochemicals, health promotion, medicinal properties, antioxidant activity, free radicals, reactive oxygen species, cells, oxidative stress, pathogenicity, biochemical pathways
Phenolic phytochemicals such as ellagic acid are important components of fruits and vegetables and are partly responsible for their beneficial health effects against oxidation-linked chronic diseases such as cancer and cardiovascular diseases. It is believed that phytochemicals such as ellagic acid function either by countering the negative effects of oxidative stress by directly acting as an antioxidant or by activating/inducing cellular antioxidant enzyme systems. These models are limited in explaining the more comprehensive antioxidant-related functions of phytochemicals in maintaining specific cellular homeostasis which contributes to its preventive mode of action and beneficial effects across diverse biological systems and cell types. In this article, we have revised the existing models and have proposed a comprehensive model for the antioxidant response-linked mechanism of the action of ellagic acid from fruits at the early stages of host cellular response by the modulation of enzyme response to maintain cellular homeostasis in eukaryotes and by inhibiting the survival in pathogenic prokaryotes.