Optimization and Validation of Procyanidins Extraction and Phytochemical Profiling of Seven Herbal Matrices of Nutraceutical Interest

Antioxidants (Basel). 2024 May 10;13(5):586. doi: 10.3390/antiox13050586.


Several medicinal herbal plants are extensively used as sources of bioactive compounds with beneficial effects on human health. This study assessed the procyanidin and polyphenol profiles together with the antioxidant potential of seven herbal medical matrices. To achieve this aim, procyanidin extraction from grape pomace was optimized and validated by monitoring monomeric-trimeric procyanidins. The proposed quantification method was applied to the seven medical herbs, and it proved to be a very efficient protocol for procyanidin-rich extracts analysis. In addition, the Paullinia cupana Kunth. seed was identified as a very rich source of procyanidins (about 5 mg/g dry matrix of each dimeric and about 3 mg/g dry matrix trimeric) with high antioxidant properties. The polyphenolic profile was assessed by HPLC-HESI-MS/MS analysis. The in vitro antioxidant activity was evaluated by DPPH assay to explore the antioxidant properties of the extracts, which were substantially higher in Peumus boldus Molina leaves extracts (935.23 ± 169 μmol of Trolox equivalent/g of dry weight) concerning the other matrices. Moreover, a high Pearson coefficient value was observed between the total flavonoid content (TFC) and DPPH in comparison with the total polyphenol content (TPC) and DPPH, indicating flavonoids as the principal bioactive with antioxidant activity in the extracts.

Keywords: HPLC-HESI-MS/MS analysis; antioxidant; extraction; flavonoid; medicinal herbs; procyanidin.

Grants and funding

This research received no external funding.