Monascus has traditionally been used for the preparation of fermented products and as a food additive in Asia and is also a traditional Chinese medicine. The present review summarizes the underlying biochemical and molecular mechanisms that can explain anti-inflammation, antioxidation, hepatoprotection, inhibition of cancer cell invasion, and detoxification of dimerumic acid (DMA) isolated from Monascus-fermented products. DMA is an antioxidant that effectively inhibits liver damage and inflammation by attenuating oxidative stress in vitro and in vivo, which is stronger than silymarin, resveratrol, or curcumin. In addition, several lines of evidence have indicated that reactive oxygen species (ROS) promotes cancer cell invasion and suppress tumor development. DMA has been reported to attenuate ROS-induced invasion of SW620 (colorectal adenocarcinoma cells) greater than silymarin, resveratrol, and curcumin. These findings suggest that DMA has potential for development as a novel antioxidant for functional foods to act against several diseases-associated oxidative stress. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.
Lee, B. H., & Pan, T. M. (2013, January). Dimerumic acid, a novel antioxidant identified from Monascus-fermented products exerts chemoprotective effects: Mini review. Journal of Functional Foods. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jff.2012.11.009