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Bioactive ingredients of rose hips (Rosa canina L) with special reference to antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties: in vitro studies

Authors Winther K, Vinther Hansen AS, Campbell-Tofte J

Received 14 July 2015

Accepted for publication 2 October 2015

Published 29 February 2016 Volume 2016:6 Pages 11—23


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Ayse Kuruuzum-Uz

Video abstract presented by Professor Kaj Winther.

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Kaj Winther,1 Anne Sophie Vinther Hansen,1 Joan Campbell-Tofte2

1Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports, University of Copenhagen, Frederiksberg C, Denmark; 2Coordinating Research Unit, Frederiksberg University Hospital, Copenhagen, Denmark

Abstract: Rosa canina pseudo fruits, often referred to as rose hips, have been used as herbal medicine for more than 2,000 years, yet research has only recently begun to clarify specific mechanisms by which this plant product affects human health. Numerous compounds have been identified, and speculations of their bioactivity have implicated flavonoids, carotenoids, and fatty acids (FAs). With more than 4,500 representatives, flavonoids have been subjected to comprehensive research, with results that suggest various individual structures may be health-promoting compounds, also in rose hips. The importance of carotenoids from R. canina is currently being debated, because the demonstration of specific bioactivity among this group is presently less clear. The benefits of specific FAs have been investigated for decades, and several types of FAs are termed “essential” for human health. The specific mechanisms for bioactivity associated with three FAs that are abundant in R. canina fruits have been clarified in research. For example, linoleic acid, α-linolenic acid (mostly present in the seeds from R. canina) and a galactolipid ((2S)-1,2-di-O-[(9Z,12Z,15Z)-octadeca-9-12-15-trienoyl]-3-O-β-d-galactopyranosyl glycerol), referred to as GOPO, have been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties. The aim of this review is to critically analyze the published literature on rose hip research, with emphasis on the broadness and varying significance of the publications. Initially, we describe the chemical ingredients of R. canina pseudo fruits, with some focus on what ingredients are found in the whole pseudo fruit and what we know is confined to the seeds (achene seeds), and/or the shells (hypanthium). Then, we evaluate important papers describing the in vitro investigations of the bioactivity and impacts of the constituents of rose hip.

Keywords: rose hip, Rosa canina, antioxidants, anti-inflammation, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis

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