The influence of organ, season and drying method on chemical composition and antioxidant and antimicrobial activities of Juniperus phoenicea L. essential oils.J Sci Food Agric. 2010 Feb; 90(3):462-70.JS
Juniperus phoenicea is an important medicinal plant. In the present study, essential oils (18 samples) from leaves and berries of Juniperus phoenicea L. (Cupressaceae), obtained by various drying methods and in different collection months, were analysed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and also evaluated for in vitro antimicrobial and antioxidant activities. Correlations were studied between antimicrobial activity and the chemical composition of essential oils.
Sixty-seven compounds were identified in essential oils, representing 97.7-100%. Essential oils were dominated by monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes, which presented 35.0-93.3% and 6.7-62.0%, respectively, depending of organ, season and drying method. Antimicrobial tests showed that essential oils strongly inhibited the growth of Gram-positive microorganisms and Mucor ramamnianus, but was inactive against Gram-negative strains. Antioxidant activity was tested using the ABTS radical-scavenging assay. Most samples showed good activity (the best IC(50) = 41.7 + or - 1.5 mg L(-1)).
It could be concluded that drying of leaves of J. phoenicea in the sun and berries in oven-drying was more suitable and was recommended for obtaining higher essential oil yield, but for a higher percentage of some special components such as alpha-pinene and delta-3-carene shade-drying was more suitable.