Radical scavenging activity and LC-MS metabolic profiling of petals, stamens, and flowers of Crocus sativus L

J Food Sci. 2012 Aug;77(8):C893-900. doi: 10.1111/j.1750-3841.2012.02803.x. Epub 2012 Jul 18.


Radical scavenging activities of Crocus sativus petals, stamens and entire flowers, which are waste products in the production of the spice saffron, by employing ABTS radical scavenging method, were determined. At the same time, the metabolic profiles of different extract (obtained by petals, stamens and flowers) were obtained by LC-ESI-IT MS (liquid chromatography coupled with electrospray mass spectrometry equipped with Ion Trap analyser). LC-ESI-MS is a techniques largely used nowadays for qualitative fingerprint of herbal extracts and particularly for phenolic compounds. To compare the different extracts under an analytical point of view a specific method for qualitative LC-MS analysis was developed. The high variety of glycosylated flavonoids found in the metabolic profiles could give value to C. sativus petals, stamens and entire flowers.

Practical application: Waste products obtained during saffron production, could represent an interesting source of phenolic compounds, with respect to the high variety of compounds and their free radical scavenging activity.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Chromatography, Liquid
  • Crocus / chemistry*
  • Flavonoids / chemistry
  • Flowers / chemistry*
  • Free Radical Scavengers / chemistry*
  • Metabolome*
  • Phenols / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Electrospray Ionization


  • Flavonoids
  • Free Radical Scavengers
  • Phenols
  • Plant Extracts