Ellagitannins are a class of hydrolyzable tannins, polyphenols formed mainly by the oxidative bond of galloyl groups in glucose 1,2,3,4,6-pentagalloyl.
From a chemical point of view, ellagitannins differ from gallotannins, in that their galloyl groups are connected via C-C bonds, while the galloyl groups in gallotannins are connected by depside bonds (polyphenolic compound consisting of two or more aromatic units).
Ellagitannins contain a variable number of hexahydroxydiphenoyl units, as well as galloyl and / or blood-borne units linked to the sugar fraction.
To determine the quantity of each single unit, the extracts are hydrolysed with trifluoroacetic acid in a methanol / water system. Hexahydroxydiphenic acid, created after hydrolysis, is spontaneously lactonated to ellagic acid and leech to bloodsorbic acid to lactone, while gallic acid remains intact.
The ellagitannins generally form macrocycles, while the gallotannins do not.
The ellagitannins are present in the plant world as in the pomegranate, the fruit of the pomegranate (Punica granatum L., 1753) which contains numerous beneficial substances for our body, including ellagitannins, vitamins and minerals.
Ellagitannins are particularly interesting molecules as they have known antioxidant and neuroprotective properties and a probable anti-tumor action.
The ellagitannins, as well as in the pomegranate are present in walnuts and berries: once hydrolyzed in the intestine, the ellagitannins release ellagic acid from which urolithin A is derived.
In studies conducted in the past on elderly animals, urolithin A was found to be able to stimulate the selective degradation of defective mitochondria, and to improve muscle health.
Warning: The information shown is not medical advice and may not be accurate. The contents are for illustrative purposes only and do not replace medical advice.