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Antioxidants 2014, 3(1), 81-98; doi:10.3390/antiox3010081

Chemical Composition and Antioxidant Properties of Juniper Berry (Juniperus communis L.) Essential Oil. Action of the Essential Oil on the Antioxidant Protection of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Model Organism

1
Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Division of Clinical Pharmacy and Diagnostics, University of Vienna, Vienna 1090, Austria
2
Department Biotechnology, University of Food Technologies, Plovdiv 4002, Bulgaria
3
Kurt Kitzing Co., Wallerstein 86757, Germany
4
University Laboratory for Food Analyses, University of Food Technologies, Plovdiv 4002, Bulgaria
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 December 2013 / Revised: 26 January 2014 / Accepted: 28 January 2014 / Published: 24 February 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antioxidants in Oils)
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Abstract

The essential oil of juniper berries (Juniperus communis L., Cupressaceae) is traditionally used for medicinal and flavoring purposes. As elucidated by gas chromatography/flame ionization detector (GC/FID) and gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS methods), the juniper berry oil from Bulgaria is largely comprised of monoterpene hydrocarbons such as α-pinene (51.4%), myrcene (8.3%), sabinene (5.8%), limonene (5.1%) and β-pinene (5.0%). The antioxidant capacity of the essential oil was evaluated in vitro by 2,2-Diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) scavenging, 2,2-azino-bis-3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6 sulfonic acid (ABTS) radical cation scavenging, hydroxyl radical (ОН) scavenging and chelating capacity, superoxide radical (O2) scavenging and xanthine oxidase inhibitory effects, hydrogen peroxide scavenging. The antioxidant activity of the oil attributable to electron transfer made juniper berry essential oil a strong antioxidant, whereas the antioxidant activity attributable to hydrogen atom transfer was lower. Lipid peroxidation inhibition by the essential oil in both stages, i.e., hydroperoxide formation and malondialdehyde formation, was less efficient than the inhibition by butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT). In vivo studies confirmed these effects of the oil which created the possibility of blocking the oxidation processes in yeast cells by increasing activity of the antioxidant enzymes superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), and glutathione peroxidase (GPx).
Keywords: juniper essential oil; Juniperus communis; GC/MS; antioxidant; Saccharomyces cerevisiae; antioxidant enzymes juniper essential oil; Juniperus communis; GC/MS; antioxidant; Saccharomyces cerevisiae; antioxidant enzymes
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Höferl, M.; Stoilova, I.; Schmidt, E.; Wanner, J.; Jirovetz, L.; Trifonova, D.; Krastev, L.; Krastanov, A. Chemical Composition and Antioxidant Properties of Juniper Berry (Juniperus communis L.) Essential Oil. Action of the Essential Oil on the Antioxidant Protection of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Model Organism. Antioxidants 2014, 3, 81-98.

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