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1.  Variability of Virgin Olive Oil Phenolic Compounds in a Segregating Progeny from a Single Cross in Olea europaea L. and Sensory and Nutritional Quality Implications 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(3):e92898.
Virgin olive oil phenolic compounds are responsible for its nutritional and sensory quality. The synthesis of phenolic compounds occurs when enzymes and substrates meet as olive fruit is crushed during the industrial process to obtain the oil. The genetic variability of the major phenolic compounds of virgin olive oil was studied in a progeny of the cross of Picual x Arbequina olive cultivars (Olea europaea L.). They belong to four different groups: compounds that included tyrosol or hydroxytyrosol in their molecules, lignans, flavonoids, and phenolic acids. Data of phenolics in the oils showed that the progeny displayed a large degree of variability, widely transgressing the genitor levels. This high variability can be of interest on breeding programs. Thus, multivariate analysis allowed to identify genotypes within the progeny particularly interesting in terms of phenolic composition and deduced organoleptic and nutritional quality. The present study has demonstrated that it is possible to obtain enough degree of variability with a single cross of olive cultivars for compounds related to the nutritional and organoleptic properties of virgin olive oil.
PMCID: PMC3961445  PMID: 24651694
2.  Precursor uptake assays and metabolic analyses in isolated tomato fruit chromoplasts 
Plant Methods  2012;8:1.
Carotenoids are the most widespread group of pigments found in nature. In addition to their role in the physiology of the plant, carotenoids also have nutritional relevance as their incorporation in the human diet provides health benefits. In non-photosynthetic tissues, carotenoids are synthesized and stored in specialized plastids called chromoplasts. At present very little is known about the origin of the metabolic precursors and cofactors required to sustain the high rate of carotenoid biosynthesis in these plastids. Recent proteomic data have revealed a number of biochemical and metabolic processes potentially operating in fruit chromoplasts. However, considering that chloroplast to chromoplast differentiation is a very rapid process during fruit ripening, there is the possibility that some of the proteins identified in the proteomic analysis could represent remnants no longer having a functional role in chromoplasts. Therefore, experimental validation is necessary to prove whether these predicted processes are actually operative in chromoplasts.
A method has been established for high-yield purification of tomato fruit chromoplasts suitable for metabolic studies. Radiolabeled precursors were efficiently incorporated and further metabolized in isolated chromoplast. Analysis of labeled lipophilic compounds has revealed that lipid biosynthesis is a very efficient process in chromoplasts, while the relatively low incorporation levels found in carotenoids suggest that lipid production may represent a competing pathway for carotenoid biosynthesis. Malate and pyruvate are efficiently converted into acetyl-CoA, in agreement with the active operation of the malic enzyme and the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex in the chromoplast. Our results have also shown that isolated chromoplasts can actively sustain anabolic processes without the exogenous supply of ATP, thus suggesting that these organelles may generate this energetic cofactor in an autonomous way.
We have set up a method for high yield purification of intact tomato fruit chromoplasts suitable for precursor uptake assays and metabolic analyses. Using targeted radiolabeled precursors we have been able to unravel novel biochemical and metabolic aspects related with carotenoid and lipid biosynthesis in tomato fruit chromoplasts. The reported chromoplast system could represent a valuable platform to address the validation and characterization of functional processes predicted from recent transcriptomic and proteomic data.
PMCID: PMC3269359  PMID: 22243738
Carotenoid; chromoplast; tomato; lipid; ripening; uptake assay
3.  Depressive Symptoms and Migraine Comorbidity among Pregnant Peruvian Women 
Journal of affective disorders  2009;122(1-2):149-153.
Migraine and depression are known to be comorbid conditions in non-pregnant women and men. However, the migraine-depression comorbidity among pregnant women, particularly women in developing countries has not been evaluated. Therefore, we evaluated the migraine-depressive symptom relationship in a large cohort of pregnant Peruvian women.
Women who delivered singleton infants (N=2,293) at the Instituto Nacional Materno Perinatal, Lima, Peru were interviewed during the postpartum hospital stay. Women were asked questions related to their lifetime and pregnancy experiences with headaches and migraines. Responses to these questions enabled the classification of “probable” and “strict” migraines according to the International Headache Society diagnostic criteria. Depressive symptoms were assessed using the nine-item Patient Health Questionnaire Depression Subset. Logistic regression procedures were used to estimate adjusted odds ratios (AORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs).
Approximately 32% of the women reported a history of migraine, while 41% reported experiencing moderate to severe depressive symptoms during pregnancy. Compared with women without a history of migraine, women with strict migraine had AORs of 2.12 (95% CI 1.54–2.93), 1.85 (95% CI 1.16–2.96) and 2.23 (95% CI 1.08–4.62) for moderate, moderately severe and severe depressive symptoms, respectively.
This is the first report of a cross-sectional association between migraine and depressive symptoms in pregnant women. If our findings are confirmed, pregnant women with a history of migraine may benefit from increased vigilance for screening and treating depressive symptoms.
PMCID: PMC2835839  PMID: 19695709
Migraine; Depressive symptoms; Pregnant women; Peru

Results 1-3 (3)