The furanocoumarins are substances whose chemical structure consists of a furan ring fused with a coumarin.
In furanocumarines, the furan ring can be fused to coumarin in two main ways, which give rise to two classes of isomers, which are: linear furanocumarines (with progenitor psoralen) and angular furanocumarins (with progenitor angelicin).
Many of the furanocumarins are toxic and photomutagene that are produced by plants mainly as a defense mechanism against predators.
The furanocoumarins are a class of natural organic substances produced by some plants and are present in the peel of many citrus fruits (especially bergamot) or as, for example, in the lemon caviar (Citrus australasica), in the Ruta graveolens, in the Pastinaca sativa and in the sap of invasive plants such as the giant hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum).
Furanocumarines are generally present freely in the plant, rarely as glycosides. These bind to the DNA of animal cells modifying them after exposure to UV light, which can lead to the initiation of mutations and carcinogenesis.
Fall among the furanocoumarins:
– Ossipeucedanina (in the skin of bergamot and lemon fruits);
– Biacangelicin (in the skin of bergamot and lemon fruits);
– Biacangelicolo (in the peel of lemon and lime fruits);
– Bergaptene (in the skin of bergamot fruits);
– Bergamottina (in the skin of bergamot and grapefruit fruits);
Warning: The information given is not medical advice and may not be accurate. The contents are for illustrative purposes only and do not replace medical advice.