Background: Trends in modern pharmaceutical science show an increase in demand for new drugs and diet supplements derived from natural products, while during the last decades, great research is conducted regarding the natural compounds and their medicinal and bioactive properties. Organosulfur compounds are present in many plants and their bioactive properties have been used in folk and traditional medicine throughout the centuries. Not until recently, modern science confirmed and revealed the chemical compounds that are responsible for these properties, the chemistry involved in their biosynthesis and the main mechanisms of action. Objective: In the present review, the organosulfur compounds of vegetable origin and their health effects are presented, focusing on the chemical composition of their main compounds, their biosynthesis and the mechanisms involved in their health effects. Sulfur compound sources presented include mainly vegetable species belonging to Allium genus and Brassicaceae family. Conclusion: Organosulfur compounds of vegetable sources are very important in human diet, and their regular consumption has a beneficial contribution to health and well-being. Moreover, their medicinal properties and therapeutic effects have been described thousands of years ago, while they constitute an important ingredient in traditional medicines and preparations. However, not until recently, the mechanisms of action of organosulfur compounds have started to unravel, with promising results for further exploitation of these significant bioactive compounds in drug development and novel nutraceutical products. This review reveals the numerous biological activities of organosulfur compounds of vegetable origin, while it also presents the results of recent clinical studies and trials.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Drug Discovery