Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Cell Biol Lipids. 2020 Jan 10:158618. Epub 2020 Jan 10. PMID: 31931174
Health benefits of fucoxanthin in the prevention of chronic diseases.
Fucoxanthin is a xanthophyll carotenoid abundant in macroalgae, such as brown seaweeds. When fucoxanthin is consumed, it can be esterified or hydrolyzed to fucoxanthinol in the gastrointestinal tract and further converted into amarouciaxanthin A in the liver. It has a unique chemical structure that confers its biological effects. Fucoxanthin has a strong antioxidant capacity by scavenging singlet molecular oxygen and free radicals. Also, it exerts an anti-inflammatory effect. Studies have demonstrated potential health benefits of fucoxanthin for the prevention of chronic diseases, such as cancer, obesity, diabetes mellitus, and liver disease. Animal studies have shown that fucoxanthin supplementation has no adverse effects. However, investigation of the safety of fucoxanthin consumption in humans is lacking. Clinical trials are required to assess the safety of fucoxanthin in conjunction with the study of mechanisms by which fucoxanthin exhibits its health benefits. This review focuses on current knowledge of metabolism and functions of fucoxanthin with its potential health benefits. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Carotenoids recent advances in cell and molecular biology edited by Johannes von Lintig and Loredana Quadro.