Scientific research has focused on the characterization of bioactive polyphenols from grape seeds and skins, and the pulp has often been overlooked. However, since the beneficial properties of grapes are associated with the consumption of whole fruit, a full extraction and posterior characterization of the phenolic compounds in whole grapes is required to identify the involved bioactive compounds. Such methodologies are not currently available for the whole edible parts of red grapes. This study aimed to determine the best polyphenol extraction conditions of whole red grapes, and apply the method to characterize and quantify the polyphenol composition of three different grapes. The optimized conditions were 80 mL/g, 65% methanol (1% formic acid), 72 °C, and 100 min under agitation of 500 rpm. Also, methanol and ethanol were compared as extraction solvents, and methanol achieved statistically higher extraction rates for anthocyanins. The results of this work suggest a higher quantification of phenolic compounds when red grapes are analyzed whole, including the seeds, pulp, and skin.
Keywords: anthocyanin; flavanols; flavonoids; proanthocyanidins; response surface methodology.