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Fucoxanthin, a Marine Carotenoid Present in Brown Seaweeds and Diatoms: Metabolism and Bioactivities Relevant to Human Health

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Author(s): Juan Peng | Jian-Ping Yuan | Chou-Fei Wu | Jiang-Hai Wang

Journal: Marine Drugs
ISSN 1660-3397

Volume: 9;
Issue: 10;
Start page: 1806;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: fucoxanthin | metabolite | bioactivity | brown seaweed | diatom

ABSTRACT
The marine carotenoid fucoxanthin can be found in marine brown seaweeds, the macroalgae, and diatoms, the microalgae, and has remarkable biological properties. Numerous studies have shown that fucoxanthin has considerable potential and promising applications in human health. In this article, we review the current available scientific literature regarding the metabolism, safety, and bioactivities of fucoxanthin, including its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, anti-obese, antidiabetic, antiangiogenic and antimalarial activities, and its protective effects on the liver, blood vessels of the brain, bones, skin, and eyes. Although some studies have shown the bioavailability of fucoxanthin in brown seaweeds to be low in humans, many studies have suggested that a dietary combination of fucoxanthin and edible oil or lipid could increase the absorption rate of fucoxanthin, and thus it might be a promising marine drug.
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