Juice components and antioxidant capacity of four Tunisian Citrus varieties

J Sci Food Agric. 2011 Jan 15;91(1):142-51. doi: 10.1002/jsfa.4164. Epub 2010 Sep 22.


Background: Juices from four Citrus species of Tunisia were investigated mainly for quality parameters and antioxidant capacity.

Results: Citrus reticulata (mandarin) juice had the highest content of total flavonoids (85.33 mg CE L(-1)). The latter also occurred in high quantity (82.01 mg CE L(-1)) in Citrus lemon (lemon) juice which was also marked by its richness in total aroma (70.16 µg mL(-1)) and in total fatty acids (48.10 µg mL(-1)). Mandarin and lemon juices had the highest antioxidant activity, as determined b the β-carotene bleaching assay (26.67% and 22.67%, respectively). Citrus aurantium (bitter orange) juice was characterised by the highest content of total polyphenols (784.67 mg GAE L(-1)) and by the greatest inhibition of DPPH (96.10%). Citrus sinensis (blood orange) juice was only marked by the high quantity of ascorbic acid (36.90 mg mL(-1)). GC/MS analysis of juice aroma showed the predominance of limonene (48.85-69.59%) in mandarin and in bitter and blood oranges, but of camphene (89.05%) in lemon. GC analysis of juice fatty acids revealed their richness in oleic acid (23.13-39.52%). HPLC analysis of juice phenolics indicated the predominance of phenolic acids (73.13-86.40%).

Conclusion: The Citrus species used in this study were considered valuable varieties from the point of view of antioxidant capacity and nutrition.

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / analysis*
  • Ascorbic Acid / analysis*
  • Beverages
  • Citrus / chemistry*
  • Citrus / classification
  • Flavonoids / analysis*
  • Fruit / chemistry*
  • Fruit / classification
  • Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry
  • Odorants / analysis
  • Oleic Acid / analysis*
  • Phenols / analysis*
  • Plant Preparations / chemistry
  • Polyphenols
  • beta Carotene / analysis*


  • Antioxidants
  • Flavonoids
  • Phenols
  • Plant Preparations
  • Polyphenols
  • beta Carotene
  • Oleic Acid
  • Ascorbic Acid