Analysis of Phenolic Compounds in Commercial Cannabis sativa L. Inflorescences Using UHPLC-Q-Orbitrap HRMS
Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Naples “Federico II,” Via Domenico Montesano 49, 80131 Naples, Italy
Department of Clinical Medicine and Surgery, University of Naples “Federico II”, Via S. Pansini 5, 80131 Naples, Italy
Laboratory of Food Chemistry and Toxicology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Valencia, Av. Vicent Andrés Estellés s/n, 46100 Burjassot, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Academic Editor: Thomas Efferth
Molecules 2020, 25(3), 631; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25030631
Received: 30 December 2019 / Revised: 24 January 2020 / Accepted: 25 January 2020 / Published: 31 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Collection Herbal Medicine Research)
Industrial hemp (Cannabis sativa L. Family Cannabaceae) contains a vast number of bioactive relevant compounds, namely polyphenols including flavonoids, phenolic acids, phenol amides, and lignanamides, well known for their therapeutic properties. Nowadays, many polyphenols-containing products made of herbal extracts are marketed, claiming to exert health-promoting effects. In this context, industrial hemp inflorescence may represent an innovative source of bioactive compounds to be used in nutraceutical formulations. The aim of this work was to provide a comprehensive analysis of the polyphenolic fraction contained in polar extracts of four different commercial cultivars (Kompoti, Tiborszallasi, Antal, and Carmagnola Cs) of hemp inflorescences through spectrophotometric (TPC, DPPH tests) and spectrometry measurement (UHPLC-Q-Orbitrap HRMS). Results highlighted a high content of cannflavin A and B in inflorescence analyzed samples, which appear to be cannabis-specific, with a mean value of 61.8 and 84.5 mg/kg, meaning a ten-to-hundred times increase compared to other parts of the plant. Among flavonols, quercetin-3-glucoside reached up to 285.9 mg/kg in the Carmagnola CS cultivar. Catechin and epicatechin were the most representative flavanols, with a mean concentration of 53.3 and 66.2 mg/kg, respectively, for all cultivars. Total polyphenolic content in inflorescence samples was quantified in the range of 10.51 to 52.58 mg GAE/g and free radical-scavenging included in the range from 27.5 to 77.6 mmol trolox/kg. Therefore, C. sativa inflorescence could be considered as a potential novel source of polyphenols intended for nutraceutical formulations.