Currently available proanthocyanidins extraction methods rely on dedicated crops and have low specificity and yield which limits their industrial application. Consequently, the development of novel methodologies and the use of sustainable sources is of great importance. Eutectic solvents have been proposed has good alternatives for conventional solvents due to their low price, easiness of preparation, biocompatibility and ability of being custom made to a specific application. Herein the effective extraction of proanthocyanidins from grape pomace and the possibility of tuning the extract's characteristics such as mean degree of polymerization and galloylation percentage is explored by means of varying the composition of a quaternary eutectic solvent composed by choline chloride, glycerol, ethanol and water. It was found that mean degree of polymerization values can vary from 6.0 to 7.37 and galloylation percentage can vary from 32.5% to 47.1% while maintaining extraction yield above 72.2 mg of proanthocyanidins per g of biomass. Furthermore, the increase of temperature up to 100 °C has showed a significant effect on the extraction yield being possible to increase it by 238% when compared to the conventional extraction method.
Keywords: degree of polymerization; eutectic solvents; extraction optimization; galloylation percentage; proanthocyanidin.