What is Nobiletin?Nobiletin is a citrus flavonoids with a structure similar to that of tangeretin. It has the typical flavonoid structure and contains 6 methoxyl groups, one more than tangeretin. This high level of methoxylation increases the hydrophobic character of tangeretin. Pure nobiletin has the appearance of colorless needles and has a bitter taste.
DistributionPeels of citrus fruits.
Health Benefits of NobiletinNobiletin seems to be a very noble phytochemical with many potential health benefits. The most studied properties of nobiletin are its anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer activities. Nobiletin also helps to lower cholesterol levels and some studies indicate that it may improve impaired memory loss and treat acne.
Numerous in-vivo and in-vitro studies have demonstrated the anti-inflammatory activity of nobiletin and its metabolites. Nobiletin acts directly as an antioxidant but also interferes with biological inflammatory processes. It inhibits the expression of genes involved in inflammation by blocking the binding of NF-kappaB with DNA. One study showed that nobiletin reduced airway inflammation of asthmatic rats. Treatment of skin cells with nobiletin also reduced inflammation caused by ultraviolet-B radiation.
The anti-cancer properties of nobiletin are supported by many scientific studies. Nobiletin act by its antiproliferation effect without being toxic to normal cells. Favourable results have been obtained on cancer cell lines of the liver, stomach, prostate and colon.
A study with cultured macrophages demonstrated the cholesterol lowering and atherosclerosis inhibiting properties of nobiletin. Nobiletin also inhibits the formation of macrophage foam cells, macrophages loaded wit lipids, which build up on artery walls.
One study on a mice model showed that nobiletin my help to improve memory loss. The brains of the mice were chirurgically altered to obtain models of Alzheimer disease. It is not known if nobiletin improves the condition of human Alzheimer patients.
We found one study showing that nobiletin inhibited sebum production on hamsters and inhibited the proliferation of sebocytes, the cells that form the sebaceous gland. This observation led the researchers to conclude that nobiletin could be used as a drug for acne treatment.