Oestrogenic activity of the hop phyto-oestrogen, 8-prenylnaringenin. (1/91)

The female flowers of the hop plant (hop cones) are used as a preservative and as a flavouring agent in beer. A novel phyto-oestrogen, 8-prenylnaringenin, was recently identified in hops and this study was undertaken to characterize the oestrogenic activity of this compound using a combination of in vitro and in vivo assays. Natural and semi-synthetic 8-prenylnaringenin showed similar bioactivities both in a yeast screen transfected with the human oestrogen receptor and in oestrogen-responsive human Ishikawa Var-I cells. 8-Prenylnaringenin showed comparable binding activity to both oestrogen receptor isoforms (ER alpha and ER beta). 8-Prenylnaringenin extracted from hops contains similar amounts of both (R)- and (S)- enantiomers, indicating that the compound is normally formed non-enzymatically. Both enantiomers showed similar bioactivity in vitro and similar binding characteristics to ER alpha and ER beta. The oestrogenic activity of 8-prenyl-naringenin in vitro was greater than that of established phyto-oestrogens such as coumestrol, genistein and daidzein. The high oestrogenic activity was confirmed in an acute in vivo test using uterine vascular permeability as an end point. When the compound was given to ovariectomized mice in their drinking water, oestrogenic stimulation of the vaginal epithelium required concentrations of 100 mug ml(-1) (about 500-fold greater than can be found in any beer).  (+info)

Membrane-bound ATPase contributes to hop resistance of Lactobacillus brevis. (2/91)

The activity of the membrane-bound H+-ATPase of the beer spoilage bacterium Lactobacillus brevis ABBC45 increased upon adaptation to bacteriostatic hop compounds. The ATPase activity was optimal around pH 5.6 and increased up to fourfold when L. brevis was exposed to 666 microM hop compounds. The extent of activation depended on the concentration of hop compounds and was maximal at the highest concentration tested. The ATPase activity was strongly inhibited by N,N'-dicyclohexylcarbodiimide, a known inhibitor of FoF1-ATPase. Western blots of membrane proteins of L. brevis with antisera raised against the alpha- and beta-subunits of FoF1-ATPase from Enterococcus hirae showed that there was increased expression of the ATPase after hop adaptation. The expression levels, as well as the ATPase activity, decreased to the initial nonadapted levels when the hop-adapted cells were cultured further without hop compounds. These observations strongly indicate that proton pumping by the membrane-bound ATPase contributes considerably to the resistance of L. brevis to hop compounds.  (+info)

Cancer chemopreventive activity of Xanthohumol, a natural product derived from hop. (3/91)

Characterization and use of effective cancer chemopreventive agents have become important issues in public health-related research. Aiming to identify novel potential chemopreventive agents, we have established an interrelated series of bioassay systems targeting molecular mechanisms relevant for the prevention of tumor development. We report anticarcinogenic properties of Xanthohumol (XN), a prenylated chalcone from hop (Humulus Iupulus L.) with an exceptional broad spectrum of inhibitory mechanisms at the initiation, promotion, and progression stage of carcinogenesis. Consistent with anti-initiating potential, XN potently modulates the activity of enzymes involved in carcinogen metabolism and detoxification. Moreover, XN is able to scavenge reactive oxygen species, including hydroxyl- and peroxyl radicals, and to inhibit superoxide anion radical and nitric oxide production. As potential antitumor-promoting mechanisms, it demonstrates anti-inflammatory properties by inhibition of cyclooxygenase-1 and cyclooxygenase-2 activity and is antiestrogenic without possessing intrinsic estrogenic potential. Antiproliferative mechanisms of XN to prevent carcinogenesis in the progression phase include inhibition of DNA synthesis and induction of cell cycle arrest in S phase, apoptosis, and cell differentiation. Importantly, XN at nanomolar concentrations prevents carcinogen-induced preneoplastic lesions in mouse mammary gland organ culture. Because XN is easily cyclized to the flavanone isoxanthohumol, activities of both compounds were compared throughout the study. Together, our data provide evidence for the potential application of XN as a novel, readily available chemopreventive agent, and clinical investigations are warranted once efficacy and safety in animal models have been established.  (+info)

Occupational airborne and hand dermatitis to hop (Humulus lupulus) with non-occupational relapses. (4/91)

We report a case of a 57-years-old female farmer with occupational airborne dermatitis and hand dermatitis to hop (Humulus lupulus). The disease appeared at the age of 46, after 30 years of working with hop without any health problems. The patient had skin erythema of the face, neck and decollete , oedema of the eyelids, conjunctivitis, as well as acute dermatitis of the hands. The symptoms were provoked both by fresh and dried hop, appeared after half-an-hour of working and persisted over 1-2 days. There were no other skin or allergic problems. Skin tests were carried out with hop leaves (saline extract: prick positive, patch negative; glycerol extract: prick positive, patch negative) and hop cones (saline extract: prick positive, patch negative; glycerol extract: prick negative, patch positive after 48 and 72 hours). Despite discontinuing work, the patient experienced several relapses of her dermatitis. We identified new sources of hop allergens: a beauty cream and a herbal sedative, both containing hop extract. During the next hop cultivation period it also turned out that sleeping in one bed with her husband was provoking relapses of the patient's dermatitis. The husband admitted that sometimes he felt too tired to wash thoroughly after working on the plantation. Our case shows that connubial contacts with husband working in the same workplace may cause relapses of occupational dermatitis. To our knowledge, this is the first report on the concurrent occupational and connubial dermatitis to hop.  (+info)

Inhibitors of nitric oxide production from hops (Humulus lupulus L.). (5/91)

Nitric oxide (NO) plays an important role in many inflammatory responses and is also involved in carcinogenesis. In the present study, we investigated the inhibitory effect of extracts from Humulus lupulus L. on both the production of NO and the expression of inducible NO synthase (iNOS) in mouse macrophage RAW 264.7 cells. The production of NO was induced by a combination of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and IFN-gamma, and determined by Griess assay. The expression of iNOS was detected by Western blotting. The LPS/IFN-gamma-induced production of NO and expression of iNOS were significantly inhibited by the ethyl acetate soluble fraction of Humulus lupulus L. Through bioactivity guided fractionation, humulene, five chalcones, 2,2-di-(3-methyl-2-butyleyl)-4,5-dihydoxy-cyclopent-4-en-1,3-dione, lupulone and three of its derivatives were isolated from the ethyl acetate soluble fraction. The chalcones, including xanthohumol, significantly inhibited the production of NO by suppressing the expression of iNOS.  (+info)

Host-plant-associated genetic differentiation in Northern French populations of the European corn borer. (6/91)

The phytophagous insects that damage crops are often polyphagous, feeding on several types of crop and on weeds. The refuges constituted by noncrop host plants may be useful in managing the evolution in pest species of resistance to the Bacillus thuringiensis toxins produced by transgenic crops. However, the benefits of these refuges may be limited because host-plant diversity may drive genetic divergence and possibly even host-plant-mediated sympatric speciation. The European corn borer, Ostrinia nubilalis Hubner (Lepidoptera: Crambidae), is the main pest of maize in Europe and North America, where it was introduced early in the 20th century. It has a wide host range but feeds principally on mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris L.) and maize (Zea mays L.). O. nubilalis is found on mugwort only in the northern part of France, whereas it is found on maize throughout France. The extent of genetic variation at allozyme markers was investigated in populations collected from the two host plants over the entire geographical distribution of the European corn borer on mugwort in France. Allelic differentiation between pairs of populations and hierarchical analyses of pools of samples from each host plant indicate that the group of populations feeding on maize differed from the group of populations feeding on mugwort. Our results suggest (1) host-plant-related divergent selection at the genomic region surrounding the Mpi locus and (2) limited gene flow between the populations feeding on mugwort and those infesting maize fields. These data indicate that adults emerging from mugwort would not be useful for managing the evolution of resistance to the B. thuringiensis toxins in European corn borer populations.  (+info)

Metabolism of 8-prenylnaringenin, a potent phytoestrogen from hops (Humulus lupulus), by human liver microsomes. (7/91)

The female flowers of hops are used throughout the world as a flavoring agent for beer. Recently, there has been increasing interest in the potential estrogenic properties of hop extracts. Among the possible estrogenic compounds in hops, 8-prenylnaringenin is perhaps most significant due to its high in vitro potency exceeding that of other known phytoestrogens. Since data regarding the pharmacokinetic properties of this compound are lacking, we investigated the in vitro metabolism of 8-prenylnaringenin by human liver microsomes. A total of 12 metabolites were identified, and biotransformation occurred on the prenyl group and the flavanone skeleton. The major site of oxidation was on the terminal methyl groups, and of the two possible isomers, the transisomer was more abundant. The double bond on the prenyl group was also oxidized to an epoxide that was opened by intramolecular reaction with the neighboring hydroxyl group. On the flavanone skeleton, the major site of oxidation was at 3'position on the B ring. Other metabolites included oxidation at carbon-3 as well as desaturation of the C ring to produce 8-prenylapigenin. An unusual hydroxy quinone product formed by ipso hydroxylation of the B ring of 8-prenylnaringenin was also detected. This product was probably an intermediate for the B ring cleavage product, 8-prenylchromone.  (+info)

Direct characterization of bitter acids in a crude hop extract by liquid chromatography-atmospheric pressure chemical ionization mass spectrometry. (8/91)

The applicability of on-line coupling of reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography to atmospheric pressure ionization tandem mass spectrometry for the separation and characterization of hop acids mixture from the crude extract of Humulus lupulus was investigated. The solvent system consisting of acetonitrile-aqueous formic acid was used to give proper separation of the six main hop bitter acids within 30 min. Further structural information about the components was acquired by collision-induced dissociation (CID). On the basis of analyses of the fragmentation patterns of the major alpha- and beta-bitter acids respectively, identification of the minor ones was performed using selected reaction monitoring (SRM) with a group of qualitatively relevant selected precursor-product ion transitions for each bitter acid in a single high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) run. Using this technique, six minor hop acids, including "adprelupulone" observed for the first time in natural resources, were detected along with the six major acids. This hyphenated techniques provides potency for rapid qualitative determination of analogs and homologs in mixtures.  (+info)