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The main objective of the
Journal of Berry Research is to improve the knowledge about quality and production of berries to benefit health of the consumers and maintain profitable production using sustainable systems.
The objective will be achieved by focusing on four main areas of research and development:
1. From genetics to variety evaluation
2. Nursery production systems and plant quality control
3. Plant physiology, biochemistry and molecular biology, as well as cultural management
4. Health for the consumer: components and factors affecting berries' nutritional value
Specifically, the journal will cover berries (strawberry, raspberry, blackberry, blueberry, cranberry currants, etc.), as well as grapes and small soft fruit in general (e.g., kiwi fruit). It will publish research results covering all areas of plant breeding, including plant genetics, genomics, functional genomics, proteomics and metabolomics, plant physiology, plant pathology and plant development, as well as results dealing with the chemistry and biochemistry of bioactive compounds contained in such fruits and their possible role in human health. Contributions detailing possible pharmacological, medical or therapeutic use or dietary significance will be welcomed in addition to studies regarding biosafety issues of genetically modified plants.
Journal of Berry Research will feature reviews, research articles, brief communications, position papers, letters and patent updates.
Abstract: BACKGROUND : Products derived from black chokeberry are claimed to be beneficial in treating chronic diseases, such as obesity and diabetes. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to determine if supplementation with Aronia melanocarpa (black chokeberry) juice concentrate (AJC) has anti-obesity properties in mice fed obesogenic diets. METHODS: Male C57BL/6J mice (n = 10/dietary treatment) were placed on either a low-fat, high-sucrose (LFHS; 5% fat), LFHS+AJC (1.44 g AJC/kg diet), high-fat (HF; 30% fat), or HF+AJC for 12-weeks. RESULTS: Final body weight was lower in LFHS+AJC compared to LFHS, HF and HF+AJC (∼14, 20%…and ∼16%, respectively; P < 0.05). Mice receiving LFHS and LFHS+AJC had significantly higher (P = 0.001) energy intake than HF and HF+AJC. LFHS-fed mice had less (–30%) epididymal fat (p < 0.05) than HF-fed mice, however mice on the LFHS+AJC had less epididymal fat per gram body weight than LFHS controls. There was no effect of diet or AJC on adipose tissue gene expression. There was no difference in plasma insulin, glucose or triglycerides between groups, however there was a positive effect of AJC on adiponectin (P = 0.059). There was also a significant effect of diet (LFHS versus HF) on HOMA-IR (P = 0.004) and HOMA-BCF (P = 0.002). CONCLUSIONS : The results from this study demonstrate that AJC supplementation has the potential to prevent weight gain and markers of obesity. Further research is needed to determine mechanisms of action.
Keywords: Aronia melanocarpa, black chokeberry, anthocyanins, mice, obesity, diabetes, body fat
Abstract: BACKGROUND: A significant body of research demonstrates that intake of berries and berry phytochemicals favorably influence metabolism via a number of different biological mechanisms. However, raspberries and select phytochemicals present in raspberries have been less studied than several other berry fruits. OBJECTIVE: The current study tested the relative effect of whole raspberry products or raspberry phytochemicals using the C57BL/6J mouse fed a high-fat, high-sucrose diet as a model for the obesigenic Western diet. The development of obesity and related metabolic complications were measured. METHODS: C57BL/6J mice were fed experimental diets for ten weeks. Diets were…formulated to include a typical dietary level of whole raspberry food products, or for the case of ellagic acid (EA) and raspberry ketone (RK), levels that could be reasonably achieved with typical dietary supplement use. In week nine, a glucose tolerance test was conducted. After ten weeks, animals were sacrificed, serum collected, and liver tissue saved for histology and lipid accumulation measurements. RESULTS: Addition of raspberry food products and phytochemicals to high-fat diet reduced body weight gain significantly when raspberry juice and puree concentrates (RJC and RPC), and the EA+RK combination were added. Food efficiency values reflected these weight changes, with the same three groups having food efficiencies similar to normal-weighted low-fat fed mice. Serum insulin and resistin levels were measured and resistin levels were reduced in the two groups fed high fat diets with RPC or RJC added. A histological evaluation of liver tissue was completed and some differences were impacted by diet. CONCLUSIONS: When added to a high-fat diet, raspberry juice and puree concentrates and the combination of EA+RK decreased weight gain and food efficiency obesity associated with consumption of the obesigenic high-fat, high-calorie diet. Future studies are required to determine mechanisms that may be responsible for these changes.
Abstract: The ability of a wild blueberry-enriched diet to improve risk factors related to Metabolic Syndrome (MetS) such as endothelial dysfunction and chronic inflammation in the Obese Zucker Rat (OZR), a model of the MetS, was studied. Obese Zucker Rats (OZRs) and their lean controls (LZR) were placed either on a Wild Blueberry-enriched (WB) or a control (C) diet for 8 weeks. Obese Zucker rats exhibited reduced vasoconstrictor response to phenylephrine (Phe) and exaggerated vasorelaxant response to acetylcholine (Ach). WB diet partially restored Phe-induced constrictor responses and attenuated Ach-induced relaxant responses in OZR. Plasma nitric oxide (NO) was significantly attenuated…and aortic effluent prostaglandin I2 PGI2 concentration significantly increased in the WB diet. Downregulation of inducible NO synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) expression in the OZR aorta was observed in the WB diet. WB consumption decreased plasma concentrations of tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α (–25.6%, P < 0.05), interleukin (IL)-6 (–14.9%, P < 0.05), C-reactive protein (CRP) (–13.1%, P < 0.05) and increased adiponectin concentration (+21.8%, P < 0.05). Expression of IL-6, TNF-α and nuclear factor (NF)-kB was downregulated in both the liver (–65%, –59% and –25%, respectively) and the abdominal adipose tissue (–64%, –52% and –65%), while CRP expression was downregulated only in the liver (–25%). Thus, WB consumption improved endothelial function and exerted an anti-inflammatory effect in the OZR.
Abstract: The incidence of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) has reached near-epidemic proportions in the Western world with other parts of the world following close behind. Glycemic control is paramount in type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) and T2DM. Berries may beneficially influence glycemic control through the action of their polyphenolic components. While clinical studies on the anti-diabetic effects of berry polyphenols are limited, epidemiological data have indicated favorable effects of berry/anthocyanins intake on development and/or management of T2DM. Furthermore, data derived from in vivo animal studies and in vitro cell culture models are promising. Various molecular targets and modulation…of cell signaling pathways in pancreatic β-cells, hepatocytes, adipocytes, and skeletal muscle cells are among the proposed mechanisms for berry polyphenols and their metabolites’ action. Berry polyphenols may exert anti-diabetic effects by (i) enhancing insulin production and reducing apoptosis and promoting proliferation of pancreatic β-cells, (ii) regulating glucose metabolism by interfering with absorption or by increasing peripheral tissue glucose uptake through insulin receptor-dependent or independent mechanisms via modification of oxidative stress, inflammation or perceived energy status of cell. This mini review discusses recent findings from our laboratory and other studies on the anti-diabetic effects of berry polyphenolic compounds with special emphasis on the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in the beneficial effects of berry polyphenol compounds.
Keywords: Anthocyanins, insulin, glucose, berry fruits, glycemic control
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Black raspberries (BRB) inhibit a broad range of cancers in preclinical models, including in vivo models of oral, esophageal, colon, breast and skin cancer. Promising preclinical results have led to clinical evaluations in cancer patients or patients at increased risk for cancer development. OBJECTIVE: To summarize clinical investigations targeting cancer or precancerous lesions with BRB and discuss future directions. METHODS: A thorough literature search was conducted through December 1, 2015 to identify all published studies evaluating BRB in cancer focused clinical trials. RESULTS: Research investigating BRB in clinical settings report positive…effects on preneoplastic lesions or cancers of the oral cavity, esophagus and colon. BRB treatment resulted in: histologic regression of oral intraepithelial neoplasia associated with improved histologic grade and significantly reduced loss of heterozygosity at tumor suppressor gene loci, modulated genes linked to RNA processing and growth factor recycling; in the colon, BRB inhibited FAP-associated polyp progression, demethylated tumor suppressor genes and improved plasma cytokine profiles; in Barrett’s patients, BRB consumption increased tissue levels of GST-pi and decreased 8-isoprostane, a marker of lipid peroxidation/oxidative stress. CONCLUSIONS: The precise dose, duration and optimum mode of BRB delivery for cancer inhibition remains to be fully elucidated. Common themes across studies support that BRB are anti-proliferative, anti- inflammatory, reduce oxidative stress and restore tumor suppressive activity. Future directions are included in the conclusions section.
Keywords: Cancer prevention, black raspberry, oral cavity, esophagus, colon, human clinical trial