The acute effects of green tea extract (GTE) on plasma metabolites in vivo are largely unknown. In this parallel, double-blind study, the transient changes in total and free concentrations of catechins were measured in plasma from healthy males following the consumption of a single GTE dose (559.2 mg total catechins, 120.4 mg caffeine). Furthermore, the acute effects on endogenous metabolites were assessed 2 h after GTE intake using four-phase metabolite profiling. The ratios of the catechin concentrations in plasma to those in the GTE followed the order ECG/CG > EC > GCG > EGCG > EGC > C > GC. The gallated catechins EGCG, CG/ECG, GC, and GCG were also present in their free form. Sixteen out of 163 mostly endogenous metabolites were affected by acute GTE ingestion, when compared to placebo. These included caffeine, salicylate, hippurate, taurine, 3,4-dihydroxyphenylethylene-glycol, serotonin, some cholesterylesters, fatty acids, triglycerides, and sphingosines. Our results on the exogenous metabolites largely confirm previous studies, while our findings on the endogenous metabolites are novel and may suggest specific biological targets.
J Agric Food Chem. 62(5): 1198-1208.