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Natural Product-Based Phenolic and Nonphenolic Antimicrobial Food Preservatives and 1,2,3,4-Tetrahydroxybenzene as a Highly Effective Representative: A Review of Patent Literature 2000-2005

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Conventional chemical preservatives used in prevention of food spoilage caused by microorganisms have shown adverse effects and found to be of low effectiveness. This challenging situation stimulated research to find alternatives. As a result, numerous natural product-based compounds have been patented for use as antimicrobial food preservatives. These compounds comprise phenolic and non-phenolic ones. The phenolic agents include mainly those composed of a single aromatic ring and flavonoid-derived molecules. The phenolic compounds display multifunctional activities, while the nonphenolic do not.

Polyhydroxybenzene derivatives exhibit high potential as effective antimicrobial or as antioxidants agents. Among the later category is 1,2,3,4-tetrahydroxybenzene (THB). THB has been recently patented as a highly effective antimicrobial and antioxidant agent. It showed significant and broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity versus a wide range of grampositive, gram-negative bacteria, yeasts, and fungi, including pathogenic and non-pathogenic organisms. Its effectiveness as an antioxidant is equal or superior to commonly used antioxidants such as butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT). Production of 1,2,3,4-tetrahydroxybenzene was accomplished efficiently by adopting a bioengineered synthesis, that is recently disclosed. In addition, there is also a patented simple chemical method.

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Keywords: Natural products; allicin; antimicrobial; arachidonic acid; ascopyrones; eicosapentaenoic acid; food preservatives; jasmonic acid; juglone; phenolic acids

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Pharmacognosy, College of Pharmacy, King Saud University, P.O. Box 2457, Riyadh, 11451, Saudi Arabia.

Publication date: June 1, 2006

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  • Recent Patents on Anti-Infective Drug Discovery publishes review articles on recent patents in the field of anti-infective drug discovery e.g. on novel bioactive compounds, analogs & targets. A selection of important and recent patents on anti-infective drug discovery is also included in the journal. The journal is essential reading for all researchers involved in anti-infective drug design and discovery.
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