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The Protective Role of Crocus Sativus L. (Saffron) Against Ischemia- Reperfusion Injury, Hyperlipidemia and Atherosclerosis: Nature Opposing Cardiovascular Diseases

[ Vol. 14 , Issue. 4 ]

Author(s):

Kyriaki Hatziagapiou* and George I. Lambrou*   Pages 272 - 289 ( 18 )

Abstract:


Background: Reactive oxygen species and reactive nitrogen species, which are collectively called reactive oxygen-nitrogen species, are inevitable by-products of cellular metabolic redox reactions, such as oxidative phosphorylation in the mitochondrial respiratory chain, phagocytosis, reactions of biotransformation of exogenous and endogenous substrate in endoplasmic reticulum, eicosanoid synthesis, and redox reactions in the presence of metal with variable valence. Among medicinal plants, there is growing interest in Crocus Sativus L. It is a perennial, stemless herb, belonging to Iridaceae family, cultivated in various countries such as Greece, Italy, Spain, Israel, Morocco, Turkey, Iran, India, China, Egypt and Mexico.

Objective: The present study aims to address the anti-toxicant role of Crocus Sativus L. in the case of cardiovascular disease and its role towards the cardioprotective role of Crocus Sativus L.

Materials and Methods: An electronic literature search was conducted by the two authors from 1993 to August 2017. Original articles and systematic reviews (with or without meta-analysis), as well as case reports were selected. Titles and abstracts of papers were screened by a third reviewer to determine whether they met the eligibility criteria, and full texts of the selected articles were retrieved.

Results: Our review has indicated that scientific literature confirms the role of Crocus Sativus L. as a cardiovascular-protective agent. The literature review showed that Saffron is a potent cardiovascular- protective agent with a plethora of applications ranging from ischemia-reperfusion injury, diabetes and hypertension to hyperlipidemia.

Conclusion: Literature findings represented in current review herald promising results for using Crocus Sativus L. and/or its active constituents as a cardiovascular-protective agent and in particular, Crocus Sativus L. manifests beneficial results against ischemia-reperfusion injury, hypertension, hyperlipidemia and diabetes.

Keywords:

Saffron, crocin, crocetin, safranal, oxidative stress, cardiovascular disease, cardiovascular protection.

Affiliation:

First Department of Pediatrics, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Choremeio Research Laboratory, Hematology/ Oncology Unit, Thivon & Levadeias, 11527, Athens, First Department of Pediatrics, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Choremeio Research Laboratory, Hematology/ Oncology Unit, Thivon & Levadeias, 11527, Athens

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