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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Molecular Biology of Human Pathogens Associated with Food

Location: Produce Safety and Microbiology Research

Title: Application of a Functional Mathematical Index for Antibacterial and Anticarcinogenic Effects of Tea Catechins

Authors
item Finotti, Enrico -
item Bersani, Enrico -
item Friedman, Mendel

Submitted to: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: December 10, 2010
Publication Date: December 31, 2010
Repository URL: http://DOI: 10.1021/jfl101717t
Citation: Friedman, M. 2010. Application of a Functional Mathematical Index for Antibacterial and Anticarcinogenic Effects of Tea Catechins. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 59:864-869.

Interpretive Summary: Tea leaves produce secondary metabolites that are involved in the defense of the plants against invading pathogens. In the case of green teas, these metabolites are polyphenolic compounds called catechins. In previous studies, we reported that pure catechins as well as green tea extracts exhibited strong antimicrobial activity against foodborne pathogens in laboratory media and in contaminated ground beef. In this collaborative study with Italian scientists, we developed a mathematical formula called functional mathematical index (FMI) that was used to define an “optimum tea” based on reported relationships between the content of structurally different catechins of a large number of teas and their antimicrobial activities and inhibition of human cancer cell lines. The described mathematical approach may be useful for predicting antimicrobial and other beneficial effects of new teas based on their catechin content.

Technical Abstract: Tea leaves produce secondary metabolites that are involved in the defense of the plants against invading pathogens. In the case of green teas, these metabolites are polyphenolic compounds called catechins. In previous studies, we developed a mathematical formula called functional mathematical index (FMI) that was used to describe the quality of different olive oils and potatoes in terms of compositional parameters and antioxidative properties of individual components. In this study, we extended the development of the FMI concept in order to define an “optimum tea” based on reported relationships between the content of structurally different catechins of a large number of teas and their dual beneficial effects: antimicrobial activities against a foodborne pathogen and inhibition of human cancer cell lines. The described mathematical approach may be useful for predicting relative beneficial effects of new teas based on their catechin content.

Last Modified: 7/28/2014
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