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The extra virgin olive oil phenolic oleacein is a dual substrate-inhibitor of catechol-O-methyltransferase

Elisabet Cuyàs, Sara Verdura, Jesús Lozano-Sánchez, Ignacio Viciano, Laura Llorach-Parés, Alfons Nonell-Canals, Joaquim Bosch-Barrera, Joan Brunet, Antonio Segura-Carretero, Melchor Sanchez-Martinez, José Antonio Encinar, Javier A Menendez
Food and Chemical Toxicology 2019 March 29, 128: 35-45
Catechol-containing polyphenols present in coffee and tea, while serving as excellent substrates for catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT)-catalyzed O-methylation, can also operate as COMT inhibitors. However, little is known about the relationship between COMT and the characteristic phenolics present in extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). We here selected the EVOO dihydroxy-phenol oleacein for a computational study of COMT-driven methylation using classic molecular docking/molecular dynamics simulations and hybrid quantum mechanical/molecular mechanics, which were supported by in vitro activity studies using human COMT. Oleacein could be superimposed onto the catechol-binding site of COMT, maintaining the interactions with the atomic positions involved in methyl transfer from the S-adenosyl-L-methionine cofactor. The transition state structure for the meta-methylation in the O5 position of the oleacein benzenediol moiety was predicted to occur preferentially. Enzyme analysis of the conversion ratio of catechol to O-alkylated guaiacol confirmed the inhibitory effect of oleacein on human COMT, which remained unaltered when tested against the protein version encoded by the functional Val158 Met polymorphism of the COMT gene. Our study provides a theoretical determination of how EVOO dihydroxy-phenols can be metabolized via COMT. The ability of oleacein to inhibit COMT adds a new dimension to the physiological and therapeutic utility of EVOO secoiridoids.


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