Cellular flavonoid transport mechanisms in animal and plant cells

Yoo Li Han, So Young Lee, Ji Hae Lee, Sung Joon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Flavonoids have various biological activities; however, their cellular uptake mechanism is beginning to be understood only recently. This review focuses on cellular flavonoids transport mechanisms in both plants and animals. In plants, flavonoids exist in various cellular compartments, providing a specialized transport system. Newly synthesized flavonoids can be transported from the endoplasmic reticulum to the vacuoles or extracellular space via cellular trafficking pathway. Among membrane transporters, ATP binding cassette, multidrug and toxic extrusion, bilitranslocase homologue transporters play roles in both the influx and efflux of cellular flavonoids across the cell membrane. In recent years, extensive researches have provided a better understanding on the cellular flavonoid transport in mammalian cells. Bilitranslocase transports flavonoids in various tissues, including the liver, intestine and kidneys. However, other transport mechanisms are largely unknown and thus, further investigation should provide detailed mechanisms, which can potentially lead to an improved bioavailability and cellular function of flavonoids in humans.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-141
Number of pages5
JournalKorean Journal of Food Science and Technology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Apr 28


  • Animal cell
  • Flavonoid
  • Plant cell
  • Transport
  • Transporter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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