Ultimate Protector contains elderberry (Sambucus nigra), as well as components from 29 different fruits, vegetables, and herbs. Each of these ingredients contain substances that may be considered to be polyphenols, antioxidants and Nrf2 activators. In this article I will explore the ingredient elderberry which is a component of Anthocomplete® from Futureceuticals.
AnthoComplete™ (N669) is a specially designed blend of anthocyanins derived from wild bilberry, wild blueberry, acai, black currant extract, sweet cherry, raspberry, elderberry, blackberry, aronia, black soybean hull extract and blue corn. Anthocyanins are powerful plant polyphenols associated with a variety of areas of human health, including healthy aging, healthy glucose metabolism, cardiovascular health and inflammation management.
Carefully designed to maximize the amount of beneficial anthocyanins that can be available in a single source, AnthoComplete is a proprietary formula suitable for a wide-range of applications.
With its diverse blend, AnthoComplete contains a minimum level of 10% anthocyanins, 3,000 ORAC μmole TE/g (typical), and 15% total phenolics (typical).
HEALTH BENEFITS OF ELDERBERRY
Elderberries were listed in the CRC Handbook of Medicinal Herbs as early as 1985, and are listed in the 2000 Mosby’s Nursing Drug reference for colds, flu, yeast infections, nasal and chest congestion, and hay fever. In Israel, Hasassah’s Oncology Lab has determined that elderberry stimulates the body’s immune system and they are treating cancer and AIDS patients with it. The wide range of medical benefits (from flu and colds to debilitating asthma, diabetes, and weight loss) is probably due to the enhancement of each individual’s immune system.
Elderberry makes a great tea, too.
At the Bundesforschungsanstalt research center for food in Karlsruhe, Germany, scientists conducting studies on Elderberry showed that elderberry anthocyanins enhance immune function by boosting the production of cytokines. These unique proteins act as messengers in the immune system to help regulate immune response, thus helping to defend the body against disease. Further research indicated that anthocyanins found in elderberries possess appreciably more antioxidant capacity than either vitamin E or vitamin C.
Studies at Austria’s University of Graz found that elderberry extract reduces oxidation of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. Oxidation of LDL cholesterol is implicated in atherogenesis, thus contributing to cardiovascular disease.
The ORAC value of Elderberries is 14697 micromoles/litre of Trolox equivalents per 100 grams. This is among the highest values for fruits and berries.
Scientific Studies on the Antioxidant Effects of Elderberries and Anthocyanidins
Polyphenols pattern and correlation with antioxidant activities of berries extracts from four different populations of Sicilian Sambucus nigra L.
Sambucus nigra L. is wide spread in temperate and sub-tropical zones. The consumption of its berries has been associated with health benefits especially for its high content of natural antioxidants such as polyphenols, in particular anthocyanins. In this work we investigated the polyphenolic composition and the in vitro antioxidant activities (ABTS, DPPH, BCB and FRAP-ferrozine (FRAP-FZ) assays) of S. nigra berries, collected in four different Sicilian areas (Italy). Elderberries are considered one of the fruits with highest anthocyanins content, the amount of phenolic compounds, other than anthocyanins, is approximately 1.5 times greater than the latter. The LC-MS analyses have revealed an opposite trend in the polyphenols pattern in Sicilian populations. Moreover, a statistical correlation was found between cyanidin-3-sambubioside-5-glucoside and antioxidant activity evaluated by FRAP-FZ and ABTS assays. In conclusion, Sicilian S. nigra berries are appealing for its antioxidant potential and for its particularly high content of anthocyanins.
Total phenolic, anthocyanin contents and antioxidant capacity of selected elderberry (Sambucuscanadensis L.) accessions.
Fourteen purple-black American elderberry accessions (Sambucus canadensis L.) obtained from various sites in midwestern USA and then grown at a single Ohio production site in USA were analyzed for their total phenolic (TP) and total monomeric anthocyanin (TMA) contents and for their antioxidant capacity by the ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) and DPPH radical scavenging assays. Total phenolic and anthocyanin contents were measured using the Folin-Ciocalteu reagent and the pH differential methods, respectively. Overall, the phytonutrient contents and antioxidant capacity of our elderberry accessions were similar to those typically reported for black raspberries, blackberries and other dark-fleshed small fruits. Variability among accessions was greatest for TMA content (CV 37.5%); individuals ranged nearly threefold from 1308 to 4004 μg cy3-GE/g on a fresh weight basis. Variation among accessions was also evident for TP, FRAP and DPPH values (CV 14.4, 21.7 and 26.8%, respectively). TP and TMA values were very highly correlated (r = 0.93), although individuals differed in the estimated proportion of total phenolics attributable to anthocyanins. Both TP and TMA also highly correlated to antioxidant capacity values (r = 0.70-0.85). Within this limited study of 14 accessions, variability for phytonutrient content and antioxidant capacity suggested the employment of wild germplasm within an elderberry improvement program to incorporate an array of superior horticultural, post-harvest or processing traits into new or existing cultivars with superior phytonutrient profiles.
The effect of Sambucol, a black elderberry-based, natural product, on the production of human cytokines: I. Inflammatory cytokines.
Sambucus nigra L. products – Sambucol – are based on a standardized black elderberry extract. They are natural remedies with antiviral properties, especially against different strains of influenza virus. Sambucol was shown to be effective in vitro against 10 strains of influenza virus. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized study, Sambucol reduced the duration of flu symptoms to 3-4 days. Convalescent phase serum showed a higher antibody level to influenza virus in the Sambucol group, than in the control group. The present study aimed to assess the effect of Sambucol products on the healthy immune system – namely, its effect on cytokine production. The production of inflammatory cytokines was tested using blood – derived monocytes from 12 healthy human donors. Adherent monocytes were separated from PBL and incubated with different Sambucol preparations i.e., Sambucol Elderberry Extract, Sambucol Black Elderberry Syrup, Sambucol Immune System and Sambucol for Kids. Production of inflammatory cytokines (IL-1 beta, TNF-alpha, IL-6, IL-8) was significantly increased, mostly by the Sambucol Black Elderberry Extract (2-45 fold), as compared to LPS, a known monocyte activator (3.6-10.7 fold). The most striking increase was noted in TNF-alpha production (44.9 fold). We conclude from this study that, in addition to its antiviral properties, Sambucol Elderberry Extract and its formulations activate the healthy immune system by increasing inflammatory cytokine production. Sambucol might therefore be beneficial to the immune system activation and in the inflammatory process in healthy individuals or in patients with various diseases. Sambucol could also have an immunoprotective or immunostimulatory effect when administered to cancer or AIDS patients, in conjunction with chemotherapeutic or other treatments. In view of the increasing popularity of botanical supplements, such studies and investigations in vitro, in vivo and in clinical trials need to be developed.
Characterization of anthocyanins and proanthocyanidins in some cultivars of Ribes, Aronia, and Sambucus and their antioxidant capacity.
Anthocyanins and proanthocyanidins were characterized by HPLC-ESI-MS/MS coupled with a diode array and/or fluorescent detector in seven cultivars of Ribes nigrum (black currant) and Ribes rubrum (red currant, Red Lake), six cultivars of Ribes grossularia (gooseberries), Aronia melanocarpa(chokeberry), and Sambucus nigra (elderberry). Thirty-one different anthocyanins were detected in these berries, but not every anthocyanin was observed in each berry. A number of minor anthocyanins were identified from these berries for the first time. The concentrations of individual anthocyanins in all of the berries were quantified using relevant anthocyanidin 3-glucoside standards. Among the berries studied in this paper and in berries in general, chokeberry has the highest total anthocyanin concentrations [1480 mg/100 g of fresh weight (FW)], whereas the lowest total anthocyanin concentration in the berries studied was found in the gooseberry cv. Careless, which contained only 0.07 mg/100 g of FW. Two cultivars of gooseberries (Marigold and Leveller) did not contain any anthocyanins. Total proanthocyanidin concentrations in the berries studied ranged from 23 to 664 mg/100 g of FW in elderberry and chokeberry, respectively. Procyanidin or prodelphinidin polymers were the predominant components (>65% w/w) in most of the berries. The lipophilic and hydrophilic antioxidant capacities were measured by the oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC(FL)) procedure. The total antioxidant capacity varied from 21 micromol of TE/g of FW in Careless gooseberry to 161 micromol of TE/g of FW in chokeberry. Total phenolics in the berries in general paralleled hydrophilic antioxidant capacity.
Inhibitory activity of a standardized elderberry liquid extract against clinically-relevant human respiratory bacterial pathogens and influenza A and B viruses.
Black elderberries (Sambucus nigra L.) are well known as supportive agents against common cold and influenza. It is further known that bacterial super-infection during an influenza virus (IV) infection can lead to severe pneumonia. We have analyzed a standardized elderberry extract (Rubini, BerryPharma AG) for its antimicrobial and antiviral activity using the microtitre broth micro-dilution assay against three Gram-positive bacteria and one Gram-negative bacteria responsible for infections of the upper respiratory tract, as well as cell culture experiments for two different strains of influenza virus.
The antimicrobial activity of the elderberry extract was determined by bacterial growth experiments in liquid cultures using the extract at concentrations of 5%, 10%, 15% and 20%. The inhibitory effects were determined by plating the bacteria on agar plates. In addition, the inhibitory potential of the extract on the propagation of human pathogenic H5N1-type influenza A virus isolated from a patient and an influenza B virus strain was investigated using MTT and focus assays.
For the first time, it was shown that a standardized elderberry liquid extract possesses antimicrobial activity against both Gram-positive bacteria of Streptococcus pyogenes and group C and G Streptococci, and the Gram-negative bacterium Branhamella catarrhalis in liquid cultures. The liquid extract also displays an inhibitory effect on the propagation of human pathogenic influenza viruses.
Rubini elderberry liquid extract is active against human pathogenic bacteria as well as influenza viruses. The activities shown suggest that additional and alternative approaches to combat infections might be provided by this natural product.
Anthocyanins protect human endothelial cells from mild hyperoxia damage through modulation of Nrf2 pathway.
The detrimental effects of high oxygen supplementation have been widely reported. Conversely, few is known about the effects of exposure to mild hyperoxic conditions, an interesting issue since the use of oxygen-enriched mixture is now increasingly used in clinical practice and especially for professional and recreational reasons. Our study investigated if in vitro exposure of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) to moderate hyperoxia (O2 32 %) induces cellular alterations, measured as changes in cell signaling pathways. Furthermore, by means of an ex vivo experimental model where human volunteers were used as bioreactors, we studied whether anthocyanin metabolites are able to protect HUVECs against mild hyperoxia-induced damage. We observed that the cytotoxic effect of mild hyperoxia came along with a significant decrease in nuclear accumulation of the transcription factor Nrf2, as well as in the expression of Nrf2-regulated antioxidant and cytoprotective genes. Furthermore, under normoxic conditions, anthocyanin metabolites appeared able to activate the Nrf2 pathway, through the involvement of specific kinases (ERK1/2); this adaptive effect may explain the protective effect observed in mild hyperoxia-exposed HUVECs following anthocyanin pretreatment. This study confirms that dietary anthocyanins and/or their metabolites can protect endothelial cells against mild hyperoxia-induced alterations acting as cell signaling modulators.
A comparative evaluation of the anticancer properties of European and American elderberry fruits.
European elderberry (Sambucus nigra), recognized in Europe for its health-promoting properties for many generations, is known to contain a range of anthocyanins, flavonoids, and other polyphenolics that contribute to the high antioxidant capacity of its berries. American elderberry (Sambucus canadensis), on the other hand, has not been cultivated, bred, and promoted as a medicinal plant like its better-characterized European counterpart. In this study, aqueous acetone extracts of the berries from these two species were fractionated and tested in a range of assays that gauge anticarcinogenic potential. Both cultivated S. nigra and wild S. canadensis fruits demonstrated significant chemopreventive potential through strong induction of quinone reductase and inhibition of cyclooxygenase-2, which is indicative of anti-initiation and antipromotion properties, respectively. In addition, fractions of S. canadensis extract showed inhibition of ornithine decarboxylase, an enzyme marker related to the promotion stage of carcinogenesis. Analysis of active fractions using mass spectrometry and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry revealed, in addition to flavonoids, the presence of more lipophilic compounds such as sesquiterpenes, iridoid monoterpene glycosides, and phytosterols.
Incorporation of the elderberry anthocyanins by endothelial cells increases protection against oxidative stress.
The objective of this study was to investigate the ability of endothelial cells (EC) to incorporate anthocyanins and to examine their potential benefits against various oxidative stressors. Endothelial dysfunction has been proposed to play an important role in the initiation and development of vascular disease, with studies having shown that administration of antioxidants improves endothelial function. Elderberry extract contains 4 anthocyanins, which where incorporated into the plasma membrane and cytosol of EC following 4 h incubation at 1 mg.ml(-1). However, incorporation within the cytosol was considerably less than that in the membrane. Uptake within both regions appeared to be structure dependent, with monoglycoside concentrations higher than that of the diglucosides in both compartments. The enrichment of EC with elderberry anthocyanins conferred significant protective effects in EC against the following oxidative stressors: hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)); 2, 2′-azobis(2-amidinopropane) dihydrochloride (AAPH); and FeSO(4)/ascorbic acid (AA). These results show for the first time that vascular EC can incorporate anthocyanins into the membrane and cytosol, conferring significant protective effects against oxidative insult. These findings may have important implications on preserving EC function and preventing the initiation of EC changes associated with vascular diseases.
Elderberry is an important fruit full of polyphenols, anthocyanins, antioxidants and Nrf2 activators that help to make Ultimate Protector such an outstanding nutritional supplement. This ingredient is becoming much more well known as research studies identify its many benefits.
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