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Special Issue "Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products"

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049). This special issue belongs to the section "Natural Products Chemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 October 2018

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Maria Carla Marcotullio

Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Perugia, Via del Liceo, 1-06123 Perugia, Italy
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +39-075-5855100
Interests: plant extract analysis; bioactive natural compounds; natural product isolation and characterization; NMR spectroscopy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Natural products are a rich source of novel biologically/pharmacologically-active compounds. Due to their high structural diversity and complexity, they represent interesting structural scaffolds that can offer promsing candidates for the study of biologically-active source of new drugs, functional foods and food additives. In recent years, great effort has been devoted to the quali- and quantitative analysis of plant extracts and bioactive metabolites.

This Special Issue welcomes original research and reviews of literature on all aspects of the analysis of plant extracts and bioactive compounds.

Prof. Maria Carla Marcotullio
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Molecules is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Bioactive Natural Compounds
  • Qualitative and Quantitative Extract Analysis
  • Conventional and Non-Conventional Analytical Techniques
  • UV/Vis spectroscopy
  • NMR spectroscopy
  • Mass spectrometry

Published Papers (17 papers)

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Research

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Unravelling the Distribution of Secondary Metabolites in Olea europaea L.: Exhaustive Characterization of Eight Olive-Tree Derived Matrices by Complementary Platforms (LC-ESI/APCI-MS and GC-APCI-MS)
Molecules 2018, 23(10), 2419; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23102419
Received: 16 August 2018 / Revised: 12 September 2018 / Accepted: 19 September 2018 / Published: 20 September 2018
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Abstract
In order to understand the distribution of the main secondary metabolites found in Olea europaea L., eight different samples (olive leaf, stem, seed, fruit skin and pulp, as well as virgin olive oil, olive oil obtained from stoned and dehydrated fruits and olive
[...] Read more.
In order to understand the distribution of the main secondary metabolites found in Olea europaea L., eight different samples (olive leaf, stem, seed, fruit skin and pulp, as well as virgin olive oil, olive oil obtained from stoned and dehydrated fruits and olive seed oil) coming from a Picudo cv. olive tree were analyzed. All the experimental conditions were selected so as to assure the maximum coverage of the metabolome of the samples under study within a single run. The use of LC and GC with high resolution MS (through different ionization sources, ESI and APCI) and the annotation strategies within MetaboScape 3.0 software allowed the identification of around 150 compounds in the profiles, showing great complementarity between the evaluated methodologies. The identified metabolites belonged to different chemical classes: triterpenic acids and dialcohols, tocopherols, sterols, free fatty acids, and several sub-types of phenolic compounds. The suitability of each platform and polarity (negative and positive) to determine each family of metabolites was evaluated in-depth, finding, for instance, that LC-ESI-MS (+) was the most efficient choice to ionize phenolic acids, secoiridoids, flavonoids and lignans and LC-APCI-MS was very appropriate for pentacyclic triterpenic acids (MS (−)) and sterols and tocopherols (MS (+)). Afterwards, a semi-quantitative comparison of the selected matrices was carried out, establishing their typical features (e.g., fruit skin was pointed out as the matrix with the highest relative amounts of phenolic acids, triterpenic compounds and hydroxylated fatty acids, and seed oil was distinctive for its high relative levels of acetoxypinoresinol and tocopherols). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Natural Scaffolds with Multi-Target Activity for the Potential Treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease
Molecules 2018, 23(9), 2182; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23092182
Received: 11 August 2018 / Revised: 22 August 2018 / Accepted: 27 August 2018 / Published: 29 August 2018
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Abstract
A few symptomatic drugs are currently available for Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) therapy, but these molecules are only able to temporary improve the cognitive capacity of the patients if administered in the first stages of the pathology. Recently, important advances have been achieved about
[...] Read more.
A few symptomatic drugs are currently available for Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) therapy, but these molecules are only able to temporary improve the cognitive capacity of the patients if administered in the first stages of the pathology. Recently, important advances have been achieved about the knowledge of this complex condition, which is now considered a multi-factorial disease. Researchers are, thus, more oriented toward the preparation of molecules being able to contemporaneously act on different pathological features. To date, the inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and of β-amyloid (Aβ) aggregation as well as the antioxidant activity and the removal and/or redistribution of metal ions at the level of the nervous system are the most common investigated targets for the treatment of AD. Since many natural compounds show multiple biological properties, a series of secondary metabolites of plants or fungi with suitable structural characteristics have been selected and assayed in order to evaluate their potential role in the preparation of multi-target agents. Out of six compounds evaluated, 1 showed the best activity as an antioxidant (EC50 = 2.6 ± 0.2 μmol/µmol of DPPH) while compound 2 proved to be effective in the inhibition of AChE (IC50 = 6.86 ± 0.67 μM) and Aβ1–40 aggregation (IC50 = 74 ± 1 μM). Furthermore, compound 6 inhibited BChE (IC50 = 1.75 ± 0.59 μM) with a good selectivity toward AChE (IC50 = 86.0 ± 15.0 μM). Moreover, preliminary tests on metal chelation suggested a possible interaction between compounds 1, 3 and 4 and copper (II). Molecules with the best multi-target profiles will be used as starting hit compounds to appropriately address future studies of Structure-Activity Relationships (SARs). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle UHPLC Analysis of Saffron (Crocus sativus L.): Optimization of Separation Using Chemometrics and Detection of Minor Crocetin Esters
Molecules 2018, 23(8), 1851; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23081851
Received: 29 June 2018 / Revised: 20 July 2018 / Accepted: 22 July 2018 / Published: 25 July 2018
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Abstract
Ultra-high performance liquid chromatography (UHPLC) coupled with diode array detection (DAD) was applied to improve separation and detection of mono- and bis-glucosyl esters of crocetin (crocins), the main red-colored constituents of saffron (Crocus sativus L.), and other polar components. Response surface methodology
[...] Read more.
Ultra-high performance liquid chromatography (UHPLC) coupled with diode array detection (DAD) was applied to improve separation and detection of mono- and bis-glucosyl esters of crocetin (crocins), the main red-colored constituents of saffron (Crocus sativus L.), and other polar components. Response surface methodology (RSM) was used to optimise the chromatographic resolution on the Kinetex C18 (Phenomenex) column taking into account of the combined effect of the column temperature, the eluent flow rate and the slope of a linear eluent concentration gradient. A three-level full-factorial design of experiments was adopted to identify suitable combinations of the above factors. The influence of the separation conditions on the resolutions of 22 adjacent peaks was simultaneously modelled by a multi-layer artificial neural network (ANN) in which a bit string representation was used to identify the target analytes. The chromatogram collected under the optimal separation conditions revealed a higher number of crocetin esters than those already characterised by means of mass-spectrometry data and usually detected by HPLC. Ultra-high performance liquid chromatography analyses carried out on the novel Luna Omega Polar C18 (Phenomenex) column confirmed the large number of crocetin derivatives. Further work is in progress to acquire mass-spectrometry data and to clarify the chemical structure to the newly found saffron components. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Stereoselective and Simultaneous Analysis of Ginsenosides from Ginseng Berry Extract in Rat Plasma by UPLC-MS/MS: Application to a Pharmacokinetic Study of Ginseng Berry Extract
Molecules 2018, 23(7), 1835; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23071835
Received: 10 July 2018 / Revised: 18 July 2018 / Accepted: 23 July 2018 / Published: 23 July 2018
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Abstract
The role of ginseng berry extract (GBE) has been attributed to its anti-hyperglycemic effect in humans. However, the pharmacokinetic characteristics of GBE constitutes after oral GBE administration have not been established yet. In this study, stereoselective and simultaneous analytical methods for 10 ginsenosides
[...] Read more.
The role of ginseng berry extract (GBE) has been attributed to its anti-hyperglycemic effect in humans. However, the pharmacokinetic characteristics of GBE constitutes after oral GBE administration have not been established yet. In this study, stereoselective and simultaneous analytical methods for 10 ginsenosides (ginsenoside Rb1, Rb2, Rc, Rd, Re, Rg1, S-Rg2, R-Rg2, S-Rg3, and R-Rg3) were developed using ultra-performance liquid chromatography, coupled with electrospray ionization triple quadrupole tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS), for the pharmacokinetic study of GBE. Furthermore, the pharmacokinetic profiles of 10 ginsenosides after oral GBE were evaluated in rats. All analytes were detected with a linear concentration range of 0.01–10 µg/mL. Lower limits of detection (LLOD) and quantification (LLOQ) were 0.003 and 0.01 µg/mL, respectively, for all 10 ginsenosides. This established method was adequately validated in linearity, sensitivity, intra- and inter-day precision, accuracy, recovery, matrix effect, and stability. Relative standard deviations for all intra- and inter-precision of the 10 ginsenosides were below 11.5% and accuracies were 85.3–111%, which were sufficient to evaluate the pharmacokinetic study of oral GBE in rats. We propose that Rb1, Rb2, Rc, Rd, Re, Rg1, S-Rg2, R-Rg2 and/or S-Rg3 were appropriate pharmacokinetic markers of systemic exposure following oral GBE administration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Phytochemical Analysis of Podospermum and Scorzonera n-Hexane Extracts and the HPLC Quantitation of Triterpenes
Molecules 2018, 23(7), 1813; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23071813
Received: 22 May 2018 / Revised: 14 July 2018 / Accepted: 16 July 2018 / Published: 21 July 2018
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Abstract
Previously tested n-hexane extracts of the Scorzonera latifolia showed promising bioactivity in vivo. Because triterpenes could account for this activity, n-hexane extracts were analyzed by HPLC to identify and quantify the triterpenes as the most abundant constituents. Other Scorzonera and Podospermum
[...] Read more.
Previously tested n-hexane extracts of the Scorzonera latifolia showed promising bioactivity in vivo. Because triterpenes could account for this activity, n-hexane extracts were analyzed by HPLC to identify and quantify the triterpenes as the most abundant constituents. Other Scorzonera and Podospermum species, potentially containing triterpenic aglycones, were included in the study. An HPLC method for simultaneous determination of triterpene aglycones was therefore developed for analysis of Podospermum and Scorzonera species. n-Hexane extracts of root and aerial parts of S. latifolia, ten other Scorzonera species and two Podospermum species were studied to compare the content of triterpenes. HPLC was used for the qualitative and quantitative analysis of α-amyrin, lupeol, lupeol acetate, taraxasteryl acetate, 3-β-hydroxy-fern-7-en-6-one acetate, urs-12-en-11-one-3-acetyl, 3-β-hydroxy-fern-8-en-7-one acetate, and olean-12-en-11-one-3-acetyl. Limits of detection and quantification were determined for each compound. HPLC fingerprinting of n-hexane extracts of Podospermum and Scorzonera species revealed relatively large amounts of triterpenes in a majority of investigated taxa. Lupeol, lupeol acetate, and taraxasteryl acetate were found in a majority of the species, except S. acuminata. The presence of α-amyrin, 3β-hydroxy-fern-7-en-6-one-acetate, urs-12-en-11-one-3-acetyl, 3β-hydroxy-fern-8-en-7-one-acetate, and olean-12-en-11-one-3-acetyl was detected in varying amounts. The triterpene content could correlate with the analgesic and anti-inflammatory activity of Scorzonera, which was previously observed and Scorzonera species that have been determined to contain triterpenes in large amounts and have not yet been tested for their analgesic activity should be tested for their potential analgesic and anti-inflammatory potential. The presented HPLC method can be used for analysis of triterpene aglycones, for example dedicated to chemosystematic studies of the Scorzonerinae. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle A UPLC-ESI-MS/MS Method for Simultaneous Quantitation of Chlorogenic Acid, Scutellarin, and Scutellarein in Rat Plasma: Application to a Comparative Pharmacokinetic Study in Sham-Operated and MCAO Rats after Oral Administration of Erigeron breviscapus Extract
Molecules 2018, 23(7), 1808; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23071808
Received: 25 June 2018 / Revised: 14 July 2018 / Accepted: 17 July 2018 / Published: 21 July 2018
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Abstract
Erigeron breviscapus, a traditional Chinese medicine, is clinically used for the treatment of occlusive cerebral vascular diseases. We developed a sensitive and reliable ultra-performance liquid chromatography-electrospray-tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-ESI-MS/MS) method for simultaneous quantitation of chlorogenic acid, scutellarin, and scutellarein, the main active
[...] Read more.
Erigeron breviscapus, a traditional Chinese medicine, is clinically used for the treatment of occlusive cerebral vascular diseases. We developed a sensitive and reliable ultra-performance liquid chromatography-electrospray-tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-ESI-MS/MS) method for simultaneous quantitation of chlorogenic acid, scutellarin, and scutellarein, the main active constituents in Erigeron breviscapus, and compared the pharmacokinetics of these active ingredients in sham-operated and middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) rats orally administrated with Erigeron breviscapus extract. Plasma samples were collected at 15 time points after oral administration of the Erigeron breviscapus extract. The levels of chlorogenic acid, scutellarin, and scutellarein in rat plasma at various time points were determined by a UPLC-ESI-MS/MS method, and the drug concentration versus time plots were constructed to estimate pharmacokinetic parameters. The concentration of chlorogenic acid in the plasma reached the maximum plasma drug concentration in about 15 min and was below the limit of detection after 4 h. Scutellarin and scutellarein showed the phenomenon of multiple absorption peaks in sham-operated and MCAO rats, respectively. Compared with the sham-operated rats, the terminal elimination half-life of scutellarein in the MCAO rats was prolonged by more than two times and the area under the curve of each component in the MCAO rats was significantly increased. The results showed chlorogenic acid, scutellarin, and scutellarein in MCAO rats had higher drug exposure than that in sham-operated rats, which provided a reference for the development of innovative drugs, optimal dosing regimens, and clinical rational drug use. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Analysis of the Active Constituents and Evaluation of the Biological Effects of Quercus acuta Thunb. (Fagaceae) Extracts
Molecules 2018, 23(7), 1772; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23071772
Received: 2 July 2018 / Revised: 15 July 2018 / Accepted: 17 July 2018 / Published: 19 July 2018
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Abstract
We evaluated the antioxidant and antibacterial activity of hexnane, ethyl acetate, acetone, methanol, ethanol, and water extracts of the Quercus acuta leaf. The antioxidant properties were evaluated by 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) free radical scavenging activity, reducing power, and total phenolic content. Antibacterial activity was
[...] Read more.
We evaluated the antioxidant and antibacterial activity of hexnane, ethyl acetate, acetone, methanol, ethanol, and water extracts of the Quercus acuta leaf. The antioxidant properties were evaluated by 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) free radical scavenging activity, reducing power, and total phenolic content. Antibacterial activity was assessed against general infectious pathogens, including antibiotic-resistant clinical isolates. The methanolic extract showed the highest DPPH radical scavenging activity and total phenolic content, while the reducing power was the highest in the water extract. The ethyl acetate extract showed the best antibacterial activity against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) strains. Additionally, it displayed antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus KCTC1928, Micrococcus luteus ATCC 9341, Salmonella typhimurium KCTC 1925, Escherichia coli KCTC 1923, and eight MRSA strains. These results present basic information for the possible uses of the ethanolic and ethyl acetate extracts from Q. acuta leaf in the treatment of diseases that are caused by oxidative imbalance and antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections. Six active compounds, including vitamin E, which are known to possess antioxidant and antibacterial activity, were identified from the extracts. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study that reports the chemical profiling and antibacterial effects of the various QA leaf extracts, suggesting their potential use in food therapy or alternative medicine. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Simultaneous Quantification of Three Curcuminoids and Three Volatile Components of Curcuma longa Using Pressurized Liquid Extraction and High-Performance Liquid Chromatography
Molecules 2018, 23(7), 1568; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23071568
Received: 21 May 2018 / Revised: 16 June 2018 / Accepted: 26 June 2018 / Published: 28 June 2018
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Abstract
A high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method was investigated for the simultaneous quantification of two chemical types of bioactive compounds in the rhizome of Curcuma longa Linn. (turmeric), including three curcuminoids: Curcumin, bisdemethoxycurcumin, and demethoxycurcumin; and three volatile components: ar-turmerone, β-turmerone, and
[...] Read more.
A high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method was investigated for the simultaneous quantification of two chemical types of bioactive compounds in the rhizome of Curcuma longa Linn. (turmeric), including three curcuminoids: Curcumin, bisdemethoxycurcumin, and demethoxycurcumin; and three volatile components: ar-turmerone, β-turmerone, and α-turmerone. In the present study, the sample extraction system was optimized by a pressurized liquid extraction (PLE) process for further HPLC analysis. The established HPLC analysis conditions were achieved using a Zorbax SB-C18 column (250 mm × 4.6 mm i.d., 5 μm) and a gradient mobile phase comprised of acetonitrile and 0.4% (v/v) aqueous acetic acid with an eluting rate of 1.0 mL/min. The curcuminoids and volatile components were detected at 430 nm and 240 nm, respectively. Moreover, the method was validated in terms of linearity, sensitivity, precision, stability and accuracy. The validated method was successfully applied to evaluate the quality of twelve commercial turmeric samples. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Aleuritolic Acid Impaired Autophagic Flux and Induced Apoptosis in Hepatocellular Carcinoma HepG2 Cells
Molecules 2018, 23(6), 1338; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23061338
Received: 24 March 2018 / Revised: 28 May 2018 / Accepted: 31 May 2018 / Published: 2 June 2018
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Abstract
Aleuritolic acid (AA) is a triterpene that is isolated from the root of Croton crassifolius Geisel. In the present study, the cytotoxic effects of AA on hepatocellular carcinoma cells were evaluated. AA exerted dose- and time-dependent cytotoxicity by inducing mitochondria-dependent apoptosis in the
[...] Read more.
Aleuritolic acid (AA) is a triterpene that is isolated from the root of Croton crassifolius Geisel. In the present study, the cytotoxic effects of AA on hepatocellular carcinoma cells were evaluated. AA exerted dose- and time-dependent cytotoxicity by inducing mitochondria-dependent apoptosis in the hepatocellular carcinoma cell line, HepG2. Meanwhile, treatment with AA also caused dysregulation of autophagy, as evidenced by enhanced conversion of LC3-I to LC3-II, p62 accumulation, and co-localization of GFP and mCherry-tagged LC3 puncta. Notably, blockage of autophagosome formation by ATG5 knockdown or inhibitors of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (3-MA or Ly294002), significantly reversed AA-mediated cytotoxicity. These data indicated that AA retarded the clearance of autophagic cargos, resulting in the production of cytotoxic factors and led to apoptosis in hepatocellular carcinoma cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Hydrophobic Amino Acid Content in Onions as Potential Fingerprints of Geographical Origin: The Case of Rossa da Inverno sel. Rojo Duro
Molecules 2018, 23(6), 1259; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23061259
Received: 5 April 2018 / Revised: 21 May 2018 / Accepted: 21 May 2018 / Published: 25 May 2018
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Abstract
In this study, we were interested in comparing the amino acid profile in a specific variety of onion, Rossa da inverno sel. Rojo Duro, produced in two different Italian sites: the Cannara (Umbria region) and Imola (Emilia Romagna region) sites. Onions were
[...] Read more.
In this study, we were interested in comparing the amino acid profile in a specific variety of onion, Rossa da inverno sel. Rojo Duro, produced in two different Italian sites: the Cannara (Umbria region) and Imola (Emilia Romagna region) sites. Onions were cultivated in a comparable manner, mostly in terms of the mineral fertilization, seeding, and harvesting stages, as well as good weed control. Furthermore, in both regions, the plants were irrigated by the water sprinkler method and subjected to similar temperature and weather conditions. A further group of Cannara onions that were grown by micro-irrigation was also evaluated. After the extraction of the free amino acid mixture, an ion-pairing reversed-phase (IP-RP) HPLC method allowed for the separation and the evaporative light scattering detection of almost all the standard proteinogenic amino acids. However, only the peaks corresponding to leucine (Leu), phenylalanine (Phe), and tryptophan (Trp), were present in all the investigated samples and they were unaffected from the matrix interfering peaks. The use of the beeswarm/box plots revealed that the content of Leu and Phe were markedly influenced by the geographical origin of the onions (with *** p << 0.001 for Phe), but not by the irrigation procedure. The applied HPLC method was validated in terms of the specificity, the linearity (a logarithm transformation was applied for the method linearization), the limit of detection (LOD) and limit of quantification (LOQ), the accuracy (≥90% for inter-day Recovery percentage), and the precision (≤10.51 for the inter-day RSD percentage), before the quantitative assay of Leu, Phe, and Trp in the onion samples. These preliminary findings are a good starting point for considering the quantity of the specific amino acids in the Rossa da inverno sel. Rojo Duro variety as a fingerprint of its geographical origin. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Quality Traits of “Cannabidiol Oils”: Cannabinoids Content, Terpene Fingerprint and Oxidation Stability of European Commercially Available Preparations
Molecules 2018, 23(5), 1230; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23051230
Received: 21 April 2018 / Revised: 12 May 2018 / Accepted: 15 May 2018 / Published: 20 May 2018
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Abstract
Cannabidiol (CBD)-based oil preparations are becoming extremely popular, as CBD has been shown to have beneficial effects on human health. CBD-based oil preparations are not unambiguously regulated under the European legislation, as CBD is not considered as a controlled substance. This means that
[...] Read more.
Cannabidiol (CBD)-based oil preparations are becoming extremely popular, as CBD has been shown to have beneficial effects on human health. CBD-based oil preparations are not unambiguously regulated under the European legislation, as CBD is not considered as a controlled substance. This means that companies can produce and distribute CBD products derived from non-psychoactive hemp varieties, providing an easy access to this extremely advantageous cannabinoid. This leaves consumers with no legal quality guarantees. The objective of this project was to assess the quality of 14 CBD oils commercially available in European countries. An in-depth chemical profiling of cannabinoids, terpenes and oxidation products was conducted by means of GC-MS and HPLC-Q-Exactive-Orbitrap-MS in order to improve knowledge regarding the characteristics of CBD oils. Nine out of the 14 samples studied had concentrations that differed notably from the declared amount, while the remaining five preserved CBD within optimal limits. Our results highlighted a wide variability in cannabinoids profile that justifies the need for strict and standardized regulations. In addition, the terpenes fingerprint may serve as an indicator of the quality of hemp varieties, while the lipid oxidation products profile could contribute in evaluation of the stability of the oil used as milieu for CBD rich extracts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Rapid Characterization of Components in Bolbostemma paniculatum by UPLC/LTQ-Orbitrap MSn Analysis and Multivariate Statistical Analysis for Herb Discrimination
Molecules 2018, 23(5), 1155; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23051155
Received: 18 April 2018 / Revised: 8 May 2018 / Accepted: 10 May 2018 / Published: 11 May 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (1174 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Bolbostemma paniculatum is a traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) showed various therapeutic effects. Owing to its complex chemical composition, few investigations have acquired a comprehensive cognition for the chemical profiles of this herb and explicated the differences between samples collected from different places. In
[...] Read more.
Bolbostemma paniculatum is a traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) showed various therapeutic effects. Owing to its complex chemical composition, few investigations have acquired a comprehensive cognition for the chemical profiles of this herb and explicated the differences between samples collected from different places. In this study, a strategy based on UPLC tandem LTQ-Orbitrap MSn was established for characterizing chemical components of B. paniculatum. Through a systematic identification strategy, a total of 60 components in B. paniculatum were rapidly separated in 30 min and identified. Then based on peak intensities of all the characterized components, principle component analysis (PCA) and hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA) were employed to classify 18 batches of B. paniculatum into four groups, which were highly consistent with the four climate types of their original places. And five compounds were finally screened out as chemical markers to discriminate the internal quality of B. paniculatum. As the first study to systematically characterize the chemical components of B. paniculatum by UPLC-MSn, the above results could offer essential data for its pharmacological research. And the current strategy could provide useful reference for future investigations on discovery of important chemical constituents in TCM, as well as establishment of quality control and evaluation method. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle A Preliminary Study of Aroma Composition and Impact Odorants of Cabernet Franc Wines under Different Terrain Conditions of the Loess Plateau Region (China)
Molecules 2018, 23(5), 1096; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23051096
Received: 3 April 2018 / Revised: 30 April 2018 / Accepted: 3 May 2018 / Published: 5 May 2018
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Abstract
Due to its appropriate climate characteristics, the Loess Plateau region is considered to be one of the biggest optimal regions for producing high-quality mountain wine in China. However, the complex landform conditions of vineyards are conducive to the formation of mountainous microclimates, which
[...] Read more.
Due to its appropriate climate characteristics, the Loess Plateau region is considered to be one of the biggest optimal regions for producing high-quality mountain wine in China. However, the complex landform conditions of vineyards are conducive to the formation of mountainous microclimates, which ultimately influence the wine quality. This study aimed to elucidate the influences of three terrain conditions of the Loess Plateau region on the aroma compounds of Cabernet Franc wines by using solid phase microextraction (SPME) with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). A total of 40, 36 and 35 volatiles were identified and quantified from the flat, lower slope and higher slope vineyards, respectively. Esters were the largest group of volatiles, accounting for 54.6–56.6% of total volatiles, followed by alcohols. Wines from the slope lands had the higher levels of aroma compounds than that from flat land. According to their aroma-active values (OAVs), ethyl hexanoate, ethyl octanoate and isoamyl acetate were the most powerful compounds among the eight impact odorants, showing only quantitative but not qualitative differences between the three terrain wines. The shapes of the OAVs for three terrain wines were very similar. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Chromatogram-Bioactivity Correlation-Based Discovery and Identification of Three Bioactive Compounds Affecting Endothelial Function in Ginkgo Biloba Extract
Molecules 2018, 23(5), 1071; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23051071
Received: 17 April 2018 / Revised: 25 April 2018 / Accepted: 27 April 2018 / Published: 3 May 2018
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Abstract
Discovery and identification of three bioactive compounds affecting endothelial function in Ginkgo biloba Extract (GBE) based on chromatogram-bioactivity correlation analysis. Three portions were separated from GBE via D101 macroporous resin and then re-combined to prepare nine GBE samples. 21 compounds in GBE samples
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Discovery and identification of three bioactive compounds affecting endothelial function in Ginkgo biloba Extract (GBE) based on chromatogram-bioactivity correlation analysis. Three portions were separated from GBE via D101 macroporous resin and then re-combined to prepare nine GBE samples. 21 compounds in GBE samples were identified through UFLC-DAD-Q-TOF-MS/MS. Correlation analysis between compounds differences and endothelin-1 (ET-1) in vivo in nine GBE samples was conducted. The analysis results indicated that three bioactive compounds had close relevance to ET-1: Kaempferol-3-O-α-l-glucoside, 3-O-{2-O-{6-O-[P-OH-trans-cinnamoyl]-β-d-glucosyl}-α-rhamnosyl} Quercetin isomers, and 3-O-{2-O-{6-O-[P-OH-trans-cinnamoyl]-β-d-glucosyl}-α-rhamnosyl} Kaempferide. The discovery of bioactive compounds could provide references for the quality control and novel pharmaceuticals development of GRE. The present work proposes a feasible chromatogram-bioactivity correlation based approach to discover the compounds and define their bioactivities for the complex multi-component systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Simultaneous Determination of Decursin, Decursinol Angelate, Nodakenin, and Decursinol of Angelica gigas Nakai in Human Plasma by UHPLC-MS/MS: Application to Pharmacokinetic Study
Molecules 2018, 23(5), 1019; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23051019
Received: 28 March 2018 / Revised: 20 April 2018 / Accepted: 23 April 2018 / Published: 26 April 2018
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Abstract
Coumarins in Cham-dang-gwi, the dried root of Angelica gigas Nakai (AGN), possess pharmacological effects on anemia, pain, infection, and articular rheumatism. The AGN root containes decursin (D), decursinol angelate (DA), nodakenin, and decursinol (DOH), a major metabolite of D and DA. The aim
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Coumarins in Cham-dang-gwi, the dried root of Angelica gigas Nakai (AGN), possess pharmacological effects on anemia, pain, infection, and articular rheumatism. The AGN root containes decursin (D), decursinol angelate (DA), nodakenin, and decursinol (DOH), a major metabolite of D and DA. The aim of this study was to develop a simultaneous determination method for these four coumarins in human plasma using ultra high performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (UHPLC-MS/MS). Chromatographic separation was performed on dual columns (Kinetex® C18 column and Capcell core C18 column) with mobile phase consisting of water and acetonitrile at a flow rate of 0.3 mL/min using gradient elution. Multiple reaction monitoring was operated in positive ion mode with precursors to product ion transition values of m/z 328.9→228.8, 328.9→228.9, 409.4→248.8, and 246.8→212.9 to measure D, DA, nodakenin, and DOH, respectively. Linear calibration curves were fitted over concentration range of 0.05–50 ng/mL for these four components, with correlation coefficient greater than 0.995. Inter- and intra-day accuracies were between 90.60% and 108.24%. These precisions were within 11.19% for all components. The established method was then applied to a pharmacokinetic study for the four coumarins after usual dosing in Korean subjects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Isolation of High Purity Anthocyanin Monomers from Red Cabbage with Recycling Preparative Liquid Chromatography and Their Photostability
Molecules 2018, 23(5), 991; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23050991
Received: 23 March 2018 / Revised: 18 April 2018 / Accepted: 20 April 2018 / Published: 24 April 2018
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Abstract
Anthocyanins from red cabbage are of great importance for their applications in the food industry as natural colorants and their beneficial effects on human wellness as natural antioxidants. This study aimed to develop an effective method for the isolation of anthocyanins with the
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Anthocyanins from red cabbage are of great importance for their applications in the food industry as natural colorants and their beneficial effects on human wellness as natural antioxidants. This study aimed to develop an effective method for the isolation of anthocyanins with the help of a combination of alternate recycling and direct recycling preparative liquid chromatography. Ten major components of anthocyanins from red cabbage were isolated and their structures were identified by HPLC-MS/MS. Meanwhile, the stability of the isolated anthocyanins under various light conditions was also investigated so as to provide data for their storage. In sum, the results showed that twin column recycling preparative chromatography is an effective method for the isolation of anthocyanin monomers with similar structures. Besides, the stability of various anthocyanins from red cabbage was related to the number of acylated groups and mainly affected by illumination. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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Open AccessArticle Talarodiolide, a New 12-Membered Macrodiolide, and GC/MS Investigation of Culture Filtrate and Mycelial Extracts of Talaromyces pinophilus
Molecules 2018, 23(4), 950; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23040950
Received: 23 March 2018 / Revised: 9 April 2018 / Accepted: 17 April 2018 / Published: 19 April 2018
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Abstract
Talarodiolide, a new 12-membered macrodiolide, was isolated and characterized from the culture filtrate of strain LT6 of Talaromyces pinophilus. The structure of (Z)-4,10-dimethyl-1,7-dioxa-cyclododeca-3,9-diene-2,8-dione was assigned essentially based on NMR and MS data. Furthermore, several known compounds were isolated and identified in the
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Talarodiolide, a new 12-membered macrodiolide, was isolated and characterized from the culture filtrate of strain LT6 of Talaromyces pinophilus. The structure of (Z)-4,10-dimethyl-1,7-dioxa-cyclododeca-3,9-diene-2,8-dione was assigned essentially based on NMR and MS data. Furthermore, several known compounds were isolated and identified in the crude extract of the culture filtrate and mycelium of this strain. EI mass spectrum at 70 eV of all isolated metabolites was acquired and compiled in a custom GC/MS library to be employed to detect metabolites in the crude extracts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Bioactive Natural Products)
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