Total phenolic content and antioxidant activity of myrtle (Myrtus communis) extracts

Mahassine Amensour, Esther Sendra, Jamal Abrini, Samira Bouhdid, José Angel Pérez-Alvarez, Juana Fernández-López
Natural Product Communications 2009, 4 (6): 819-24
The total phenolic content and antioxidant activity of methanolic, ethanolic and aqueous extracts of myrtle (Myrtus communis) leaves and berries were measured to find new potential sources of natural antioxidants. Total phenolic content was assessed by the Folin-Ciocalteau assay, while the antioxidant activity was evaluated by three methods: diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging capacity assay, the reducing antioxidant power assay and beta-carotene linoleic acid assay. The total phenol content of myrtle extracts ranged between 9.0 and 35.6 mg GAE per g extract. For each solvent, leaf extracts contained significantly higher amount of total phenolic compounds than berry extracts. All of the extracts presented antioxidant capacity assessed by the three methods, but at different levels depending on the concentration, the extraction solvent and the part of the plant used. Generally, leaf extracts showed higher antioxidant activities than berry extracts, while the overall antioxidant strength was in the order methanol > water > ethanol in leaf extracts and methanol > ethanol > water in berry extracts. The phenolic content exhibited a positive correlation with the antioxidant activity: DPPH assay showed the highest correlation (r = 0.949), followed by the reducing power assay (r = 0.914) and the lowest for the beta-carotene linoleic acid assay (r = 0.722).

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