Anti-infective potential of Northern wild berry polyphenols and honeys

Theme 5. Other
Session Name 5.3 Health promotion and population health
Presentation Type Oral
Presenter
Author(s) Sanna Huttunen (University of Eastern Finland, Finland), Marko Toivanen (University of Eastern Finland, Finland), Jackie Obey (University of Eastern Finland, Finland), Djamila Oinaala (University of Helsinki, Finland), Carina Tikkanen-Kaukanen (University of Helsinki, Finland)
Abstract text

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) resistance is a global problem. AMR threatens the prevention and treatment of increasing range of infections. There is a need for novel means when fighting against bacterial infections. One approach is to use agents that interfere with the ability of the bacteria to adhere to the tissues of the host, the initial step of the infection. Our research deals with wild berry bioactive polyphenols in prevention of bacterial attachment to human nasopharynx and antimicrobial activity of Finnish honeys.By employing several methods in vitro (e.g. cell culture and microtiter binding assay) we have shown that wild berry molecular fractions inhibited the adhesion of Neisseria meningitis to epithelial cells causing human meningitis and septicemia.  Anti-adhesive properties of berry fractions against different Streptococci causing human respiratory infections, newborn meningitis or animal diseases and against oral pathogens causing dental caries was detected as well. Inhibitory activity of the wild berry fractions was revealed especially from Vaccinium berries. Analyzed by HPLC, NMR and mass spectrometry the activity was associated with polyphenols, mainly proanthocyanidins and/or anthocyanins. We have also shown antimicrobial activity Finnish honeys against food poisoning and several other pathogenic bacteria. Bioactive wild berry and other natural products provide a great potential in controlling infectious diseases both in anti-adhesive and in antimicrobial way. They can be utilized in their natural form or in functional food development to protect healthy consumers. The product development could also be directed especially to risk groups, to newborns, elderly people, military servants and immunocompromised patients.

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