Stilbenoids are of great interest on account of their many promising biological activities, especially in regards to prevention and potential treatment of many chronic diseases associated with aging. The simple stilbenoid monomer, E-resveratrol, has received the most attention due to early in vitro and in vivo biological activities in anti-aging assays. Since Vitis vinifera, primarily in the form of wine, is a major dietary source of these compounds, there is a tremendous amount of research on resveratrol in wine and grapes. Relatively few biological studies have been performed on other stilbenoids from Vitis, primarily due to the lack of commercial sources of many of these compounds. The diverse stilbenoids from this economically important genus are an untapped source of health promoting compounds and because of this, numerous efforts for isolation, identification and quantification of additional stilbenoids have been ongoing. Additionally, due to their role as phytoalexins, stilbenoids play an important role in the defense against pathogens. Therefore, the compounds produced by highly resistant strains are of great interest for the development of resistant crops, natural spray reagents, and as new dietary supplements or pharmaceuticals. Since closely related species are likely to have similar metabolic pathways, a more thorough understanding of the chemical diversity of stilbenoids within Vitis is useful in this endeavor. In this review, we focus on stilbenoids found in the Vitis genus with the aim of aiding future stilbenoid chemistry, particularly in V. vinifera and wine. Additionally, we discuss the efforts to quantify stilbenoids in Vitis, with a focus on non-resveratrol stilbenoid compounds.
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