Sesame Lignans: Potent Components As Nutraceuticals/functional Foods | 40525
Journal of Cancer Science & Therapy
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Oxidative stress is a key component in several chronic degenerative disease including cancer. Sesame has long been known
to have both nutritional and medicinal value. However, the scientific basis of the health claims of sesame is not clear
yet. The fatty acid composition and the tocopherol levels do not completely explain the high stability of sesame oil and these
unusual characteristics are attributed to its non-glyceride components, i.e. the lignans, namely sesamin and sesamolin. Sesamin
has been shown to have hypocholesterolemic and immunomodulatory properties while sesamolin is the precursor ofsesamol
Studies at NIN were focused to evaluate the potency of sesame lignans in biological (invitro and invivo) systems and
foods. Sesamin and sesamolin were isolated and crystallized from highlignan cultivars, and their purity was confirmed by
spectral analysis.Although lignansper se were weak antioxidants they enhanced the antioxidant activity of vitamin E, sugesting
that sesame lignans may have sparing effects on tocopherols. The effects of feeding sesamin and sesamolin on Fe2+-induced
oxidative stress in rats showedincreased bioavailability of tocopherols, probably due to regeneration of oxidized tocopherols.
Addition of sesame lignans to edible oils resulted in increased thermal stability suggesting that sesame lignans may have
potential application as natural antioxidants in the edible oil and food industry; The synergistic effects of lignans with tocols has
nutritional and therapeutic implications. Therefore sesame lignans may be considered as active ingredients of nutraceuticals/
Hemalatha Sanagaram was awarded her PhD in the year 2002 from Osmania University, Hyderabad. She has been working in the area of lipid chemistry with specific emphasis on the role of minor components present in the non glyceride fraction of oils in health and disease. She has published papers in peer reviewed International journals.