Sulforaphane bioavailability and bioactivity in humans Conference Paper uri icon


  • Sulforaphane (SFN) is an isothiocyanate derived from cruciferous vegetables with many potential health benefits. However, there is limited knowledge about its bioavailability in humans. Crucifers contain glucoraphanin (GFN), which is hydrolyzed by myrosinase to yield SFN. Myrosinase is present within the plant, and a small amount is produced by gut bacteria. We previously observed a 7 fold decrease in SFN bioavailability from GFN supplements with inactivated myrosinase than from fresh broccoli sprouts, suggesting that the lack of myrosinase impacts SFN bioavailability. Goals of the present study were to determine the bioavailability and bioactivity of a myrosinasetreated broccoli sprout extract (BSE) supplement and broccoli sprouts. Participants consumed BSEs or broccoli sprouts once or twice a day (time 0 and 12h). SFN bioavailability from BSE was improved over myrosinaseinactivated GFN supplements but was still about 3 times lower than broccoli sprouts. Consuming SFN twice daily maintained plasma metabolite levels at 24 hours, suggesting that the twice daily dosing protocol resulted in longer retention of plasma SFN levels. Nrf2 target genes and histone deacetylase activity were used to measure biological response to SFN treatment. This research provides important information for SFN supplement use in clinical trials. Funding: R01CA122906 & P01CA090890Grant Funding Source: R01CA122906, P01CA090890

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Atwell, L. L., Clarke, J. D., Hsu, A., Bella, D., Stevens, J. F., Dashwood, R. H., Williams, D. E., & Ho, E.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Atwell, Lauren L||Clarke, John D||Hsu, Anna||Bella, Deborah||Stevens, Jan F||Dashwood, Roderick H||Williams, David E||Ho, Emily

publication date

  • April 2013