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Molecules 2016, 21(11), 1569; doi:10.3390/molecules21111569

Ultrasound-Assisted Extraction May Not Be a Better Alternative Approach than Conventional Boiling for Extracting Polysaccharides from Herbal Medicines

School of Chinese Medicine, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong, China
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Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Shaoping Nie
Received: 3 November 2016 / Revised: 15 November 2016 / Accepted: 15 November 2016 / Published: 18 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Polysaccharides)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [6454 KB, uploaded 18 November 2016]   |  

Abstract

In clinical practice polysaccharides from herbal medicines are conventionally prepared by boiling water extraction (BWE), while ultrasound-assisted extraction (UAE) has often been used instead employed in laboratory research due to its strong extraction ability and efficiency. However, if and how the polysaccharides obtained by UAE and BWE are comparable, and hence whether the UAE-based research is instructive for the actual usage of herbal polysaccharides still requires further evaluation. To address this issue, here we chemically analyzed and compared the UAE- and BWE-obtained polysaccharides from three herbal medicines, i.e., Ginseng Radix, Astragali Radix and Dendrobii Officinalis Caulis. Then, the spike recovery of two series of standard dextran and pullulan by UAE and BWE was tested. The results showed that the polysaccharides from the herbal medicines by UAE were quantitatively and qualitatively different with those by BWE. The powerful extraction ability and polysaccharide degradation caused by ultrasound collectively contributed to these differences. It was then revealed that not only the UAE conditions but also the polysaccharide structures could affect the extraction ability and polysaccharide degradation. Given these, we highly recommended that the effects of UAE on polysaccharides from herbal medicines should be first carefully considered before employing it in relevant chemical and pharmacological analysis. View Full-Text
Keywords: ultrasound-assisted extraction; extraction conditions; structural features; polysaccharides; herbal medicines; degradation ultrasound-assisted extraction; extraction conditions; structural features; polysaccharides; herbal medicines; degradation
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Yip, K.-M.; Xu, J.; Tong, W.-S.; Zhou, S.-S.; Yi, T.; Zhao, Z.-Z.; Chen, H.-B. Ultrasound-Assisted Extraction May Not Be a Better Alternative Approach than Conventional Boiling for Extracting Polysaccharides from Herbal Medicines. Molecules 2016, 21, 1569.

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