Anthocyanin: Structure, Synthesis and its Beneficial Role in Health

Prachi Sharma, Chaitali Ghosh, Jitendra Singh Rathore


Anthocyanins, are chemically diverse class of secondary metabolites that color most flowers and fruits. They consist of three aromatic rings that can be substituted with hydroxyl, sugar, acyl and methyl groups in a variety of patterns, depending on the plant species. There are basically six types of anthocyanins commonly found in plants. The biosynthesis of anthocyanins start with the pentose-phosphate pathway, continues with shikimate pathway, and follows the pathway of flavonoids. Furthermore, they are essential nutrients for human health. Anthocyanins help attract insects to flowers for pollination, herbivorous animals to fruits for seed dissemination and also serve as a quality indicator in different foods. Anthocyanins have various effects including antioxidant, anti-allergic, anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-proliferative, antimicrobial, anti-mutagenic, anti-carcinogenic, protection from cardiovascular damage and allergy, microcirculation improvement, diabetes prevention, and vision improvement. The aim of the present article is to summarize the known functions and properties of anthocyanins, to help us in our understanding of their functional mechanisms and benefits.


Keywords: Anthocyanins, phenylpropanoid pathway, shikimate pathway, antioxidant

Cite this Article

Prachi Sharma, Chaitali Ghosh, Jitendra Singh Rathore. Anthocyanin: Structure, Synthesis and its Beneficial Role in Health. Research & Reviews: Journal of Food Science and Technology. 2016; 5(1): 45–55p.

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