The word cereal is derived from ceres, the Roman Goddess of grain. The common cereal crops are rice, wheat, corn, oats and rye. The term cereal is not limited to these but also flours, meals, breads and alimentary pastes or pasta. Cereal science is a study concerned with all technical aspects of cereal. It is the study the nature of the cereals and the changes that occurs naturally and as a result of handling and processing.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Avenanthramides in oats

Oats contain phenolic amides, also named avenanthramides (AVAs). Avenanthramides are polyphenols existing exclusively in oats. Studies have shown their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-proliferatory properties, and making avenanthramides interesting therapeutic candidates for treatment of diseases with cardiovascular and dermatological origin.

The most common avenanthramides are esters of 5-hydroxyanthranilic acid with p-coumaric (AVA-A), ferulic (AVA-B), or caffeic (AVA-C) acids. ) Avenanthramides are hydroxycinnamic acid 44 amides with hydroxyanthranilic acids.

The antioxidant activity of avenanthramides was 10–30 times higher than those of the typical cereal components such as phenolic acids. Avenanthramides are low molecular‐ weight soluble polyphenols that exist exclusively in oats, where they act as phytoalexins produced in response to pathogens.

Avenanthramides play a role as phytoalexins in oat leaves because they exhibit antifungal activity and their synthesis is induced by infection with pathogens and by treatment with elicitors. In addition, avenanthramides have been shown to be incorporated into cell walls upon pathogen infection.

Avenanthramides helps in preventing free radicals from damaging LDL cholesterol and AVAs-enriched extract of oats combined with vitamin C synergistically inhibits LDL oxidation in vitro. Both animal studies and human clinical trials confirmed that oats antioxidants have the potential of reducing cardiovascular risks by lowering serum cholesterol, inhibiting LDL cholesterol oxidation and peroxidation.

Studies have indicated avenanthramides abilities to inhibit vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation and to suppress expression of adhesion molecules from vascular endothelial cells through inhibition of the cytokine IL‐1Β.
Avenanthramides in oats
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