Olive products are rich in phenolic compounds, which are natural antioxidants in vitro. We tested the in vivo effects of alperujo, an olive production by-product, as well as hydroxytyrosol and 3,4-dihydroxyphenylglycol (DHPG) isolated from alperujo, on indices and pathways of oxidative and metabolic stress in a vitamin E-deficient rat model.
Methods and results
Rats were fed a vitamin E-deficient diet for 10 weeks, followed by this diet supplemented with either 100 mg/kg diet da-tocopherol, alperujo extract, hydroxytyrosol, or 10 mg/kg diet DHPG, for a further 2 weeks. We detected alperujo phenolics in tissues and blood, indicating they are bioavailable. Alperujo extract partially ameliorated elevated plasma levels of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances and also lowered plasma cholesterol levels, whereas hydroxytyrosol increased plasma triglyceride levels. Proteomics and subsequent network analysis revealed that hepatic mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH2), of which protein and activity levels were regulated by da-tocopherol and olive phenolics, represents a novel central regulatory protein hub affected by the dietary interventions.
The in vivo free radical scavenging properties of olive phenolics appear relatively modest in our model. But alternative mechanisms, including regulation of ALDH2, may represent relevant antioxidant mechanisms by which dietary olive phenolics could have beneficial impact on cardiovascular health.