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Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 2012, Article ID 627843, 9 pages
Research Article

An Investigation of the Relationship between the Anti-Inflammatory Activity, Polyphenolic Content, and Antioxidant Activities of Cooked and In Vitro Digested Culinary Herbs

School of Life Sciences, Kingston University, Penrhyn Road, Kingston upon Thames KT1 2EE, UK

Received 10 February 2012; Accepted 14 March 2012

Academic Editor: David Vauzour

Copyright © 2012 Magali Chohan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


There is little research on how cooking and digestion affect the anti-inflammatory activity of culinary herbs. Thus, the aim of this paper was to investigate this activity following cooking and in vitro digestion of the common culinary herbs, rosemary, sage, and thyme, and the relationship between their anti-inflammatory activity, polyphenol content, and antioxidant capacity. The anti-inflammatory activity of uncooked (U), cooked (C), cooked and in vitro digested (C&D), and standardised (STD, 30 mg/mL) culinary herbs was assessed by measuring their effect on interleukin 8 (IL-8) release from stimulated human peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBLs) and Caco-2 cells. The trolox equivalent capacity (TEAC) and estimated total phenolic content of the herbs were also determined. There was a significant decrease in IL-8 release from PBLs stimulated with H2O2 incubated with (U), (C), (C&D), and (STD) herbs and from Caco-2 cells stimulated with TNFα incubated with (C&D) and (STD) herbs. PBLs pre-incubated with (C&D) herbs prior to stimulation (H2O2 or TNFα) caused a significant inhibition in IL-8 release. The significant correlations between TEAC and estimated phenolic content and the anti-inflammatory activity suggest a possible contributory role of polyphenols to the anti-inflammatory activity of the culinary herbs investigated.