Interaction of polyphenols with the intestinal and placental absorption of some bioactive compounds

Elisa Keating, Conceição Calhau, Ana Faria, Fátima Martel

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


In this chapter, we will review the existent data concerning the effect of polyphenols upon the transport of some bioactive compounds (glucose, thiamine, folate, and organic cations) at the intestinal and placental epithelial barriers. Some important conclusions can be drawn. First, different classes of polyphenols affect transport of these compounds at the intestine and placenta. Second, different compounds belonging to the same phenolic class often possess opposite effects upon transport of a given molecule. Third, short- and long-term exposure to a given polyphenol does not produce parallel results. Fourth, combination of distinct polyphenols, as happens in natural foods, may cause very distinct effects from the expected ones based on the effect of each of these compounds alone. Fifth, ethanol is able to modify the effect of polyphenols. In summary, the studies reviewed here raise a concern about possible changes in the bioavailability of these substrates upon concomitant ingestion of polyphenols.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPolyphenols
Subtitle of host publicationMechanisms of Action in Human Health and Disease
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9780128130063
ISBN (Print)9780128130070
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Folates
  • Glucose
  • Intestine
  • Organic cations
  • Placenta
  • Polyphenols
  • Thiamine


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