Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Nordic berries inhibit growth of harmful intestinal bacteria

03.11.2004


A research project carried out by VTT Biotechnology and the University of Helsinki has found that cloudberries and raspberries contain a phenol, ellagic tannin, that inhibits the growth of intestinal bacteria.



The study concerned commercially grown Finnish berries, particularly cloudberry and raspberry. One of the substances inhibiting growth of harmful intestinal bacteria and pathogens is a complex phenolic polymer, ellagic tannin, found in the berries. Other berries and fruit contain only small quantities of ellagic tannin. "We were especially surprised and excited by the observation that probiotics that are beneficial for digestion are not sensitive to the berries, but harmful bacteria are. Consequently, the berries may inhibit the activity of harmful bacteria. The antimicrobial qualities of the berries are also well preserved with e.g. freezing," says the project director, Riitta Puupponen-Pimiä of VTT Biotechnology.

Thus, possible examples of derivatives from the berries might be berry powder to help traveller’s tummy, or berry extract as an added preservative for marinades. During the first three years, the research project collaborated with the food industry. Pharmaceutical and health food industries have joined later. Around ten businesses in all have participated in the project.


Effect of berries on bacteria

The project studied about ten bacteria that cause infections of the alimentary canal and food poisoning, and how they reacted to the phenols in berries. Salmonella and listeria were some of the bacteria under study. The phenols present in the berries were found to inhibit growth of salmonella, staphylococcus and camphylobacter. The phenols in the berries had no significant effect on the functioning of listeria.

"Understanding the interaction of phenolic compounds and bacteria of the alimentary canal is important, for example for developing functional foods. As antimicrobial compounds, phenols may have a previously unforeseen effect on intestinal microbes," says Ms Puupponen-Pimiä.

Widely applicable

The study has aroused a great deal of interest, as it has a wide range of possible applications. The results may be utilised e.g. in developing functional foods, new types of safe food packaging, and in pharmaceutical applications.

The project is currently focusing on developing a method of isolating the phenolic compounds, to enable them to be used in industrial applications. Another objective is development of treatments to increase the concentration of beneficial substances contained in the berries.

The project is part of the National Technology Agency of Finland (Tekes) technology programme Innovation in Foods.

Mira Banerjee | alfa
Further information:
http://www.tekes.fi

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Ambush in a petri dish
24.11.2017 | Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena

nachricht Meadows beat out shrubs when it comes to storing carbon
23.11.2017 | Norwegian University of Science and Technology

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New proton record: Researchers measure magnetic moment with greatest possible precision

High-precision measurement of the g-factor eleven times more precise than before / Results indicate a strong similarity between protons and antiprotons

The magnetic moment of an individual proton is inconceivably small, but can still be quantified. The basis for undertaking this measurement was laid over ten...

Im Focus: Frictional Heat Powers Hydrothermal Activity on Enceladus

Computer simulation shows how the icy moon heats water in a porous rock core

Heat from the friction of rocks caused by tidal forces could be the “engine” for the hydrothermal activity on Saturn's moon Enceladus. This presupposes that...

Im Focus: Nanoparticles help with malaria diagnosis – new rapid test in development

The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.

Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

IceCube experiment finds Earth can block high-energy particles from nuclear reactions

24.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A 'half-hearted' solution to one-sided heart failure

24.11.2017 | Health and Medicine

Heidelberg Researchers Study Unique Underwater Stalactites

24.11.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>