By-products of beer brewing may help fight dental diseases

According to a recently published study from Japan, parts of hops that are not used in the production of beer contain substances that could be beneficial to oral health. The study showed that hop bracts, which are usually discarded, could be used to combat dental cavities and periodontal disease.

Using a novel sequential chromatographic technique, pharmacists at the University of Tokyo investigated the compounds of hop bracts for their health effects, as few of these compounds have been identified to date.

Overall, they were able to isolate over 100 types of constituents from only 25 g of hop bract extract. The researchers found three new compounds, 20 known compounds found for the first time in hops in this study, as well as one known compound first identified in plants. The bracts also contained substantial amounts of proanthocyanidins, which have antioxidant properties and are found in apples, cinnamon and red wine too, and are thought to promote health.

Past studies at the university had found that extracts from bracts stopped carious and periodontal bacteria from adhering to surfaces and prevented the release of some bacterial toxins.

As reported in a press release issued by the American Chemical Society, farmers in the US harvest about 2,300 tons of hops every year. However, the bracts are not used for brewing beer but are discarded. Therefore, there are large amounts of bracts potentially available that could be repurposed for dental applications, the society stated.

The study, titled “Comprehensive separation and structural analyses of polyphenols and related compounds from bracts of hops (Humulus lupulus L.)”, was published on 18 February in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry ahead of print. It was conducted in collaboration with Asahi Group Holdings, a Japanese brewery and soft drink group.

Original Source: The Dental