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Quercetin: potentials in the prevention and therapy of disease

Bischoff, Stephan C

Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition & Metabolic Care: November 2008 - Volume 11 - Issue 6 - p 733–740
doi: 10.1097/MCO.0b013e32831394b8
Micronutrients: Edited by Hans K. Biesalski and Henry C. Lukaski

Purpose of review Quercetin is discussed since several decades as a multipotent bioflavonoid with great potential for the prevention and treatment of disease. In the current review, we present the most recent findings on quercetin with regard to the pharmacology, the in-vitro and in-vivo effects in different cell systems and animal models, and the clinical effects in humans.

Recent findings Quercetin bioavailability has been underestimated in the past and can be improved by food matrix components or particular delivery forms. Among the biological effects of particular relevance, the antihypertensive effects of quercetin in humans and the improvement of endothelial function should be emphasized. Together with its antithrombotic and anti-inflammatory effects, the latter mainly mediated through the inhibition of cytokines and nitric oxide, quercetin is a candidate for preventing obesity-related diseases. Most exiting are the findings that quercetin enhances physical power by yet unclear mechanisms. The anti-infectious and immunomodulatory activities of quercetin might be related to this effect.

Summary Quercetin is a most promising compound for disease prevention and therapy; however, many of the effects still need confirmation by human intervention trials.

Institute of Nutritional Medicine, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany

Correspondence to Stephan C. Bischoff, MD, Professor of Medicine, Institute of Nutritional Medicine, University of Hohenheim, D 70593 Stuttgart, Germany Tel: +49 711 459 24101; fax: +49 711 459 24343; e-mail: bischoff.stephan@uni-hohenheim.de; website: www.uni-hohenheim.de/ernaehrungsmed

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.