Differences in the volatile compositions of ginseng species (Panax sp.)

J Agric Food Chem. 2012 Aug 8;60(31):7616-22. doi: 10.1021/jf301835v. Epub 2012 Jul 30.


The volatile compositions in dried white ginseng according to species (Panax ginseng, Panax notoginseng, and Panax quinquefolius) were analyzed and compared by applying multivariate statistical techniques to gas chromatography-mass spectrometry data sets. Main volatile compounds of ginseng species in the present study were sesquiterpenes, such as bicyclogermacrene, (E)-β-farnesene, β-panasinsene, calarene, α-humulene, β-elemene, etc. In particular, α-selinene, α-terpinolene, β-bisabolene, β-phellandrene, β-sesquiphellandrene, zingiberene, germacrene D, limonene, α-gurjunene, (E)-caryophyllene, δ-cadinene, (E)-β-farnesene, α-humulene, bicyclogermacrene, longiborn-8-ene, β-neoclovene, and (+)-spathulenol were mainly associated with the difference between P. ginseng and P. notoginseng versus P. quinquefolius species. On the other hand, the discrimination between P. ginseng and P. notoginseng could be constructed by hexanal, 2-pyrrolidinone, (E)-2-heptenal, (E)-2-octenal, heptanal, isospathulenol, (E,E)-2,4-decadienal, 3-octen-2-one, benzaldehyde, 2-pentylfuran, and (E)-2-nonenal.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Monocyclic Sesquiterpenes
  • Panax / chemistry*
  • Panax / classification
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry*
  • Sesquiterpenes / analysis
  • Volatile Organic Compounds / chemistry*


  • Monocyclic Sesquiterpenes
  • Plant Extracts
  • Sesquiterpenes
  • Volatile Organic Compounds
  • spathulenol
  • zingiberene