Tea, rich in phytochemicals, has been suggested to have human health benefits. The phenolic profiles, antioxidant and antiproliferative activities of 27 tea cultivars were determined. Wide ranges of variation were found in analyzed cultivars for the contents of water-soluble phenolics (121.6-223.7 mg/g dry weight (DW)), total catechins (TC) (90.5-177.2 mg/g DW), antioxidant activities (PSC values 627.3-2332.3 μmol of vitamin C equiv/g DW, ORAC values (1865.1-3489.3 μmol of vitamin C equiv/g DW), CAA values (37.7-134.3 μmol of QE/g DW without PBS wash and 25.3-75.4 μmol of QE/g DW with PBS wash) and antiproliferative activity (53.0-90.8% at the concentration of 400 μg/mL extracts). The PSC, ORAC and CAA values were significantly correlated with phenolics, epicatechin gallate (ECG), CC and TC. Knowledge of specific differences among tea cultivars is important for breeding tea cultivars and gives sights to its potential application to promote health.
Keywords: Tea; antiproliferation; catechins; cellular antioxidant activity; phenolics.