NeurOliv - Olive Polyphenols for the Prevention of Dementia 


  • De novo synthesis of functional ingredients from olives
  • Identifying coding genes and use of new synthetic routes to the model of the olive plant
  • Development of efficient downstream processes for the isolation of substances in high purity to preparative scale.
  • Studies of metabolic and biofunctional properties of olive ingredients  in cell and mouse models of Alzheimer's disease in terms of their mitochondrial protective effects.

Supported by:

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Recent clinical studies indicate that certain dietary patterns including the Mediterranean diet may prevent from Alzheimer`s disease. Olives and its products are one key component of the Mediterranean diet. We have shown that olive polyphenols, e.g. hydroxytyrosol, protects from oxidative- and nitrosative stress and improves mitochondrial function in vivo and in vitro. In the new project we will screen a variety of olive ingredients for their potential to improve mitochondrial function in vitro. The best compounds will be further tested for their efficacy in mouse models of brain aging and Alzheimer`s disease.

The special feature of the materials that we are going to test is that they are made by a biotechnological approach. Our partners at the Technical University of Darmsatadt (Prof. Warzecha and his group) develop procedures to produce defined and pure ingredients. Using the genetical informations, bacteria will produce olive compounds in high yields. Starting from this material N-Zyme Biotec GmbH will develop new nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals for the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer`s  disease. 

Schaffer S, Podstawa M, Visioli F, Bogan P, Müller WE, Eckert GP.
Hydroxytyrosol-rich olive mill waste extract protects brain cells in vitro and ex vivo.
J Agric Food Chem. 2007, 55(13):5043-9.

Schaffer S, Müller WE, Eckert GP.
Cytoprotective effects of olive mill wastewater extract and its main constituent hydroxytyrosol in PC12 cells.
Pharmacol Res. 2010, 62: 322–327.


N-Zyme Biotec GmbH
TU Darmstadt (Prof. Warzecha and team)

Press & Media:

Press release Goethe-University Frankfurt
Radio-Broadcast HR4, 17.03.2015 [in German]; Oliven gegen das Vergessen []
TV-Broadcast „RTL Hessen“ 29.06.2015; [in German]; Oliven gegen Alzheimer []

© Prof. Dr. Gunter P. Eckert 2018