Characterization and quantification of flavonoids and hydroxycinnamic acids in curly kale (Brassica oleracea L. Convar. acephala Var. sabellica) by HPLC-DAD-ESI-MSn

J Agric Food Chem. 2009 Apr 8;57(7):2816-25. doi: 10.1021/jf803693t.


Kale is a leafy green vegetable belonging to the Brassicaceae family, a group of vegetables including cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts, with a high content of health-promoting phytochemicals. The flavonoids and hydroxycinammic acids of curly kale ( Brassica oleracea L. ssp. oleracea convar. acephala (DC.) Alef. var. sabellica L.), a variety of kale, were characterized and identified primarily through HPLC-DAD-ESI-MS(n) analysis. Thirty-two phenolic compounds including glycosides of quercetin and kaempferol and derivatives of p-coumaric, ferulic, sinapic, and caffeic acid were tentatively identified, providing a more complete identification of phenolic compounds in curly kale than previously reported. Moreover, three hydroxycinnamic acids and one flavonoid with an unusual high grade of glycosylation, quercetin-3-disinapoyl-triglucoside-7-diglucoside, have been tentatively identified for the first time. The influence of different extraction conditions (extraction method, solvent type, solvent/solid ratio, and duration of extraction) was investigated. The total flavonol and hydroxycinnamic acid contents in curly kale determined as rutin equivalents (RE) were 646 and 204 mg of RE/100 g of fresh weight (fw), respectively. The contents of individual flavonoids ranged from 2 to 159 mg of RE/100 g of fw, with main compounds kaempferol-3-sinapoyl-diglucoside-7-diglucoside (18.7%) and quercetin-3-sinapoyl-diglucoside-7-diglucoside (16.5%). After acidic hydrolysis, two flavonol aglycones were identified in curly kale, quercetin and kaempferol, with total contents of 44 and 58 mg/100 g of fw, respectively.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Brassica / chemistry*
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid / methods*
  • Coumaric Acids / analysis*
  • Flavonoids / analysis*
  • Glycosides / analysis
  • Hydrolysis
  • Kaempferols / analysis
  • Phenols / analysis
  • Quercetin / analysis
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Electrospray Ionization / methods*


  • Coumaric Acids
  • Flavonoids
  • Glycosides
  • Kaempferols
  • Phenols
  • kaempferol
  • Quercetin