Flavonoids – Small Molecules, High Hopes

Open access

Abstract

This brief review takes a look at flavonoids, a wide class of polyphenols, which are regarded as plant secondary metabolites. Their roles in plants are diverse and little understood. They can act as growth hormone modulators, phytoalexins, they offer UV protection, contribute to pollen viability and can function as signaling molecules in establishing symbiotic relationships. Flavonoids were also found to have a range of beneficial effects for the human body. Their anticancer, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and cardioprotective activity, as well as their antibacterial, antiviral and antihelmintic properties make them promising candidates for the design of new drugs.

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