Phytochemistry and Functionality of Plant Products (BIOVEG)

  • Contact mail: mpilar.cano@csic.eslogo_BioVeg
  • Group leader: Pilar Cano Dolado

Group members

Research Staff

  • M. Pilar Cano Dolado

Predoctoral Staff

  • Sara Lara Abia
  • Iván Gómez López
  • Sara Parralejo Sanz
  • Wilson V. Vasquez
  • Daniel A. Alvarado López

Research Summary

The research lines of the group BIOVEG focus on the evaluation of biological activity and bioavailability of micronutrients and phytochemicals or bioactive compounds (mainly vitamins C and E, carotenoids and phenolic compounds) from vegetables foods and improving their healthy potential through the use of new technologies. The search for new sources of obtaining functional ingredients are made from undervalued plant species, byproduct or surplus from processing industries. These lines of action can be summarized as follows:

  • Application of new Nonthermal technologies to improve quality (sensory and nutritional) and healthy potential (composition and functionality) of food
  • Ensuring food safety of fresh vegetable and processed using new technologies
  • Use of products or surplus production and processing industry plant products
  • Development of new functional foods and ingredients
  • Assessment of biological activity, bioavailability and bioavailability of bioactive compounds from plant matrices using in vitro and in vivo

Highlighted publications

  • Lara-Abia,S., Welti-Chanes, J., Cano, M.P. 2022. Effect of Ultrasound-Assisted Extraction of Carotenoids from Papaya (Carica papaya L. cv. Sweet Mary) Using Vegetable Oils. Molecules. 27 (3), 638,, IF: 4.412
  • Vasquez-Rojas, W.V., Martin, D., Miralles, B., Recio, I., Fornari, T., Cano, M. P.  2021. Composition of Brazil nut (Bertholletia excels HBK), its beverage and by-products: A healthy food and potential source of ingredients. 10 (2), 3007., IF: 4.350
  • Gómez-López, I., Lobo-Rodrigo, G., Portillo, M.P., Cano, M.P. 2021.Ultrasound-Assisted “Green” Extraction (UAE) of antioxidant compounds (Betalains and phenolics) from Opuntia stricta var. Dilenii’s fruits: Optimization and biological activities. Antioxidants. 10, 1786., IF: 6.313
  • Lara-Abia, S., Welti-Chanes, J., Cano, M.P.  2021. Effect of High Hydrostatic Pressure on the Extractability and Bioaccessibility of Carotenoids and their Esters from Papaya (Carica papayaL.) and its Impact on Tissue Microstructure. 10(10), 2435,, IF: 4.350
  • Gómez-Maqueo, A., Soccio, M., Cano, M.P. 2021. In Vitro Antioxidant Capacity of Opuntia spp. Fruits Measured by the LOX-FL Method and its High Sensitivity Towards Betalains. Plant Foods for Human Nutrition, 76(3),354-362,, IF: 3.921
  • Gómez-Maqueo, A., Steurer, D., Welti-Chanes, J., Cano, M.P. 2021. Bioaccessibility of Antioxidants in Prickly Pear Fruits treated with High Hydrostatic Pressure: An Application for Healthier Foods. 26,, IF: 4.411
  • Olmedilla-Alonso, B., Granado-Lorencio, F., de Ancos, B., Sánchez-Moreno, C., Marín-Belloso, O., Blanco, I., Herrero-Barbudo, C., Elez, P., Plaza, L., Cano, M.P. 2021. Greater bioavailability of xanthophylls than of carotenes from orange juice (high-pressure, pulsed electric fields and low temperature pasteurization processing and freshly squeezed) in a cross-over study in healthy subjects. Food Chemistry. 130821; j.foodchem.2021.130821. IF: 7.514

Recent Research Projects

  • Development of new formulations from opuntia fruits for the management of liver steatosis.
    • OPUN4LIVERHEALTH. Ref: PID2020-118300RB-C21 y PID2020-118300RB-C22.
    • Subproyecto nº1: Innovative green processes to develop new smart formulations from Opuntia spp. fruit by-products for the prevention of liver steanosis (GREEN4BIOPUNTIA)
    • IP: M. Pilar Cano Dolado, CIAL (CSIC-UAM).
    • Cuantía: 211750 €
  • European network to advance carotenoid research and applications in agro-food and health (EUROCAROTEN)
    • Duración: 2016-2019
    • Coordinador: Antonio Meléndez, Universidad de Sevilla, España
    • Responsable grupo CIAL: M. Pilar Cano Dolado
    • Entidad financiadora: COST European Cooperation in Science and Technology EU Framework Programme Horizon 2020
  • Mejora de funcionalidad de alimentos y desarrollo de nutraceúticos mediante tecnologías innovadoras (FunFoodEmertec)
    • Duración: 2015-2018
    • I.P. del proyecto: Prof. Jorge Welti-Chanes, Escuela de Ingeniería y Ciencias, Monterrey (México)
    • I.P. CIAL: M. Pilar Cano
    • Entidades participantes: Escuela de Ingeniería y Ciencias, Monterrey (México); Instituto de Investigación en Ciencias de la Alimentación (CIAL) (CSIC-UAM), España; Universidad de Oregón (OSU); Universidad de Lleida, España
    • Entidad financiadora: Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey (ITESM)
  • Alimentos funcionales y estrategias nutricionales eficaces para la prevención y tratamiento de enfermedades crónicas.
    • Referencia:  P2013/ABI-2728 ALIBIRD
    • Duración: 2014-2018
    • Responsable coordinador del proyector: Guillermo Reglero Rada
    • Responsable del grupo BIOVEG: M. Pilar Cano Dolado
    • Entidades participantes: UAM, Instituto del Frío-CSIC, IFI-CSIC, UCM, Fundación La Paz, Fundación IMDEA Alimentación, Instituto de Salud Carlos III.
    • Entidad financiadora: Comunidad de Madrid