Sulforaphane, the plant active substance with the best anti-cancer effect found in vegetables

Jun 22, 2021


Sulforaphane is a kind of isothiocyanate, which is hydrolyzed by glucosinlates (Glu hereinafter referred to as glucosides) by myrosinase enzyme (myrosinase enzyme) in the plant. The molecular formula is C6H11NOS2. It is rich in cruciferous plants such as broccoli, kale, northern round carrot, and the content reaches the peak when broccoli seeds germinate. It is a common antioxidant and the plant activity with the best anti-cancer effect found in vegetables. substance.



Sulforaphane is a sulfur-containing compound, which is formed by glucosinolates hydrolyzed by myrosinase. It is a yellow or colorless liquid at room temperature. It is insoluble in water, but easily soluble in organic solvents such as methanol, dichloromethane, and acetonitrile. It is easy to decompose under high temperature and alkaline conditions, the relative molecular mass is 177.3, and the molecular formula is C6H11S2NO. Glucosinolate and myrosinase exist stably in plant tissue cells and vacuoles respectively, and only when the plant tissue is destroyed can it be hydrolyzed to obtain sulforaphane. Since the hydrolysis process is affected by factors such as pH, temperature, moisture, etc., it often results in a decrease in sulforaphane production. Although natural enzymatic hydrolysis is susceptible to environmental influences, it can create an enzymatic hydrolysis environment that is conducive to the synthesis of sulforaphane based on the chemical properties of sulforaphane, such as a suitable enzymatic hydrolysis pH of 5 to 7, which is conducive to the synthesis of sulforaphane.


Sulforaphane not only has strong anti-cancer activity, but also has strong anti-oxidation ability. It is recognized as one of the natural products with anti-cancer, anti-cancer and cosmetic effects. As early as the early 20th century, researchers have studied the anti-cancer and anti-cancer effects of sulforaphane, and found that sulforaphane has inhibitory effects on liver cancer, colon cancer, breast cancer, and prostate cancer. It induces Phase Ⅱ enzymes and activates anti-cancer effects. The production of cancer substances kills white blood cells; in addition, sulforaphane can adjust the outermost immune system of a person-the skin, and enhance human immunity. U.S. researchers conducted experiments on humans and mice that sulforaphane helps the lungs to remove harmful bacteria. Researchers from Johns Hopkins University in the United States published a report on April 13 that sulforaphane can activate a signal channel called NRF2. Once this signal channel fails to function, human macrophages will not be able to remove dead cells and foreign bacteria in the lungs, so that the lungs cannot be kept clean, leading to infection. The macrophages of smokers and patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) have lost this cleaning function. The results of this research were published in the American Journal of Science Translational Medicine on April 13. Researchers have begun a phase II clinical trial in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease to confirm whether sulforaphane can improve lung function in patients.


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