Pomegranate (Punica granatum) is a heath with abundant hydrolysable tannin in its peel. This study demonstrated that POMx (70% acetone extract of pomegranate peels) significantly reduced interleukin (IL)-1β-induced inducible nitric oxide synthase, cyclooxygenase-2, and matrix metalloproteinase-13 protein expression in primary rat chondrocytes (PRCs). In the type II collagenase-induced osteoarthritis rat model, POMx (150 mg/kg) recovered the weight-bearing ratio changes in experimental animals, suggesting the alleviation of knee-related inflammation and nociception. Therefore, the major compound, punicalagin, was isolated from POMx. Punicalagin also significantly reduced IL-1β-induced inflammatory factors in PRCs and exerted significant antiosteoarthritis effects in the vivo model after 28-d treatment (concentration: 0.50 mg/kg). However, the IC50 values of POMx and punicalagin against prostaglandin E2 production were 83.2 and 36.0 μg/mL, respectively, and the concentration of punicalagin in POMx was 19.1%. Altogether, POMx can be used to develop functional foods for knee-related diseases, and punicalagin can act as an active ingredient.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)216-222
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Functional Foods
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018


  • Functional foods
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Pomegranate
  • Primary rat chondrocyte
  • Punicalagin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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