Edible berry extracts rich in anthocyanins possess a broad spectrum of therapeutic
OptiBerry® Demonstrates Whole-Body Antioxidant Protection
Edible berry extracts rich in anthocyanins possess a broad spectrum of therapeutic, pharmacologic and anti-carcinogenic properties. Anthocyanins are naturally occurring compounds that have antioxidant, anti-carcinogenic and anti-angiogenic properties. OptiBerry®, a synergistic blend of six standardized, anthocyanin-rich edible berry extracts, was developed after screening a variety of extract combinations for their antioxidant capacity, cellular uptake, safety, and the ability to block undesirable blood vessel growtha key event in tumor formation.
To evaluate the in vivo antioxidant properties of OptiBerry®, animals deficient in vitamin E (an antioxidant) were exposed to a hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) system to induce oxidation. Glutathione, an important antioxidant, was protected in the lungs and liver of animals fed OptiBerry® for 8 weeks prior to HBO exposure. In addition, feeding OptiBerry® for 2 weeks before exposure to HBO significantly protected animals against whole-body oxidation compared to control animals.
Whole-body oxidation was measured by electron paramagnetic resonance, a state-of-the-art imaging technique. To further assess safety, OptiBerry® was evaluated in acute oral and dermal tests, as well as in eye and skin irritation tests, in animals. The oral and skin LD50 (acute toxicity) values were found to be greater than 5,000 and 2,000 milligrams per kilogram of body weight, respectively, indicating very low potential for toxicity. No changes in body weight or adverse effects were seen in histopathological evaluation. In primary irritation tests, OptiBerry® was observed to be only slightly or minimally irritating to the skin and eye, respectively. These findings indicate that OptiBerry® is safe and offers whole-body antioxidant protection under the present test conditions.
Antioxidant and Anticarcinogenic Properties of Edible Berry Anthocyanins
Anthocyanins are common components of fruits and vegetables, in particular berries, which provide pigmentation (color) and serve as natural antioxidants. Epidemiologic data supports the association between high intake of fruits and vegetables, and low risks of chronic diseases, including cancer. Fruits and vegetables are rich sources of a variety of nutrients, including vitamins, trace minerals, dietary fiber and many other classes of biologically active compounds. Several studies have shown that berries, which are rich in anthocyanins, possess potent antioxidant, anti-aging, anti-carcinogenic and anti-diabetic properties. Anthocyanins also protect DNA integrity, provide cardiovascular protection, improved brain function and mental clarity, healthy vision, urinary tract health and dermal health. Thus, the broad spectrum of current research supports the hypothesis that edible berries rich in anthocyanins provide a wide range of health benefits.