OPC Polyphenols

It all started with…

In 1945 a professor at the University of Bordeaux studying the composition of peanut skins identified the first procyanidins or oligomeric proanthocyanidins, or OPCs.

In 1951, the discovery was patented. In subsequent work, the scientist succeeded in isolating these same OPCs from pine bark and from grape seeds.

Procyanidolic oligomers, better known as OPC, are phenolic compounds contained in numerous plants.

OPCs are polymers of catechin and epicatechin. They belong to the family of condensed tannins. OPCs with beneficial properties are essentially oligomers, from dimers to hexamers. OPC or procyanidolic oligomers have the same pattern, called catechin or epicatechin, repeated 2, 3, 4 or 5 times.

Over 6 repetitions, molecules are called polymers, and have a higher molecular weight. They are very poorly absorbed and therefore have very little biological activity.

Despite their abundance in nature, our diets provide us with few OPCs. Indeed, OPCs are abundant in the fruit and vegetable skins, in seed cuticles and in the seeds themselves. All these are usually discarded when preparing or eating food.

Properties

OPCs are known for their antioxidant and vasotonic properties as well as for the role they play in the inhibition of LDL oxidation. Purextract extracts OPCs from two sources: the Maritime Pine bark and grape seeds.

The OPC extracted from Maritime Pine bark is also widely used for its beneficial action in skin care and beauty (in resisting cell ageing, protecting natural elastins and collagens, depigmentation, and stimulating microcirculation).

 

OPCs extracted from grape seeds are also used for weight loss, stimulating lipolysis and improving energy flow.