Many ethnic fermented soybean products (FSPs) have long been consumed as seasoning and protein sources in East Asia. To evaluate the quality of various FSPs in East Asia, non-targeted metabolite profiling with multivariate analysis of six traditional FSPs (Natto; NT, Cheonggukjang; CG, Doenjang; DJ, Miso; MS, Doubanjiang; DB, Tianmianjiang; TM) was performed. Six FSPs could be clearly distinguished by principle component analysis (PCA) and partial least square-discriminant analysis (PLS-DA). Amino acid contents were relatively higher in NT and CG, sugar and sugar alcohol contents were relatively higher in MS and TM, isoflavone glycoside contents were relatively highest in CG, isoflavone aglycon contents were the highest in DJ, and soyasaponin contents were the highest in CG. Antioxidant activity and physicochemical properties were determined to examine the relationships between the FSPs and their antioxidant activities. We observed a negative correlation between isoflavone aglycon contents and 2,2’-azino-bis(3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulphonic acid) (ABTS) activity. Furthermore, the order of ABTS activity of FSPs has a positive correlation with the order of soybean content in the six FSPs. Herein it was found that primary metabolites were affected by the main ingredients and secondary metabolites were most influenced by the fermentation time, and that soybean content contributed more to antioxidant activity than fermentation time.
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