Four isoflavone-metabolizing bacteria were tested for their abilities to degrade (−)-epigallocatechin (EGC) and its isomer (−)-gallocatechin (GC). Biotransformation of both EGC and GC was observed with Adlercreutzia equolifaciens JCM 14793, Asaccharobacter celatus JCM 14811, and Slackia equolifaciens JCM 16059, but not Slackia isoflavoniconvertens JCM 16137. With respect to the degradation of EGC, strain JCM 14793 only catalyzed 4′-dehydroxylation to produce 4′-dehydroxylated EGC (7). Strain JCM 14811 mainly produced 7, along with a slight formation of the C ring-cleaving product 1-(3,4,5-trihydroxyphenyl)-3-(2,4,6-trihydroxyphenyl)propan-2-ol (1). Strain JCM 16059 catalyzed only C ring cleavage to form 1. Interestingly, the presence of hydrogen promoted the bioconversion of EGC by these bacteria. In addition, strain JCM 14811 revealed the ability to catalyze 4′-dehydroxylation of 1 to yield 1-(3,5-dihydroxyphenyl)-3-(2,4,6-trihydroxyphenyl)propan-2-ol (2) in the presence of hydrogen. In the case of GC, strain JCM 14793 mainly produced C ring-cleaving product (1) with only a very small amount of 4′-dehydroxylated GC (8), while Strain JCM 14811 only catalyzed 4′-dehydroxylation to form 8. Strain JCM 16059 formed 1. The bioconversion of GC by the three strains was stimulated by hydrogen. Strain JCM 14793 showed the ability to convert 1 into 2 in the presence of hydrogen as did strain JCM 14811. Furthermore, strains JCM 14793 and JCM 14811 were found to have the ability to catalyze p-dehydroxylation of the pyrogallol moiety in the EGC metabolites 4-hydroxy-5-(3,4,5-trihydroxyphenyl)valeric acid (3) and 5-(3,4,5-trihydroxyphenyl)-γ-valerolactone (4), and this ability was enhanced by the presence of hydrogen.
2015 The Pharmaceutical Society of Japan