Evaluation of total phenolics, flavonoids and antioxidant activity of 18 Korean onion cultivars: a comparative study.J Sci Food Agric. 2014 Jun; 94(8):1521-9.JS
Onion is undoubtedly one of the major sources of flavonoids. However, there exists a varietal difference in composition, concentration and beneficial activities of onion, on the basis of cultivars, day length sensitivity/ripening and types. To characterise such differences, 18 onion cultivars from Korean were evaluated for their total phenolics, flavonoids and antioxidant activity. Simultaneous quantification of quercetin, quercetin-3,4'-O-diglucoside, quercetin-4'-O-monoglucoside and isorhamnetin-3-glucoside was made in methanol and 75% ethanol.
Total phenolic content was examined spectrophotometrically with the Folin-Ciocalteu phenol reagent and total antioxidant activity were studied by the ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) and diphenyl picryl hydrazyl (DPPH) methods. The cultivar 'Sunpower' showed the highest level of total phenolics [5016 ± 30.0 µg gallic acid equivalents g(-1) dry weight (DW)] and flavonoids (2873.95 ± 60.01 µg Q g(-1) DW) among the 18 cultivars in methanol. However, there were fewer total phenolics and flavonoids in ethanol extracts. The antioxidant activity for cultivar Sunpower was highest in ethanol extracts 24.12 ± 1.00 and 16.13 ± 0.35 µmol L(-1) Trolox equivalents g(-1) DW with FRAP and DPPH, respectively.
Among the 18 cultivars, Sunpower is the most promising in terms of total phenolics, total flavonoids and antioxidant activity. Our results suggest that day length sensitivity/ripening among the cultivars do not play any significant role for high values of total phenolics, flavonoids and antioxidant activity.