Off-campus UMass Amherst users: To download campus access theses, please use the following link to log into our proxy server with your UMass Amherst user name and password.
Non-UMass Amherst users: Please talk to your librarian about requesting this thesis through interlibrary loan.
Theses that have an embargo placed on them will not be available to anyone until the embargo expires.
Master of Science (M.S.)
Year Degree Awarded
Month Degree Awarded
Blackberry, Pear, Diabetes, Hypertension, Antioxidants, Syndrome X
Type II diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is a chronic disease that has a worldwide prevalence which is expected to rise dramatically over the course of the next thirty years. The disease has reached pandemic stages of development in many cultures, most notably in developing countries, followed somewhat closely by developed countries with access to an overabundance of refined carbohydrates and fat (refined oils). T2DM is a condition that can be prevented or managed, but not cured; therefore a method of stymieing the development of this disease is paramount to halting its progressively increasing morbidity. In this study, bartlett pear and kiowa blackberry were investigated in relation to their ability to modify and improve both glucose metabolism and hypertension management with in vitro assay models. Effectiveness and bioactive functionality was evaluated by various in vitro assays to study the properties of: 100% bartlett pear juice, 100% kiowa blackberry juice and a ratio of 70:30 pear: blackberry juice found to have increased phenolic properties due to synergy in previous studies. These assays aimed at determining: alpha-amylase and alpha-glucosidase inhibition, angiotensin converting enzyme inhibition, total soluble phenolic content and antioxidant capabilities. These juices were also fermented with Lactobacillus helveticus and Bifidobacterium longum, common yogurt culture strains, to investigate if fermentation would improve the bioactive functionality of pear: blackberry synergies. A secondary goal of the experiment was to investigate if these fruit juices could prevent the growth of Helicobacter pylori, which is a common bacterium found in the stomach which can lead to cancer.