Antioxidant activity and phenolic content of leaf infusions of Myrtaceae species from Cerrado (Brazilian Savanna).Braz J Biol 2015; 75(4):948-52BJ
There is considerable interest in identifying new antioxidants from plant materials. Several studies have emphasized the antioxidant activity of species belonging to the Myrtaceae family. However, there are few reports on these species from the Cerrado (Brazilian savanna). In this study, the antioxidant activity and phenolic content of 12 native Myrtaceae species from the Cerrado were evaluated (Blepharocalyx salicifolius, Eugenia bimarginata, Eugenia dysenterica, Eugenia klotzschiana, Hexachlamys edulis, Myrcia bella, Myrcia lingua, Myrcia splendens, Myrcia tomentosa, Psidium australe, Psidium cinereum, and Psidium laruotteanum). Antioxidant potential was assessed using the antioxidant activity index (AAI) by the DPPH method and total phenolic content (TPC) by the Folin-Ciocalteu assay. There was a high correlation between TPC and AAI values. Psidium laruotteanum showed the highest TPC (576.56 mg GAE/g extract) and was the most potent antioxidant (AAI = 7.97, IC50 = 3.86 µg·mL-1), with activity close to that of pure quercetin (IC50 = 2.99 µg·mL-1). The extracts of nine species showed IC50 of 6.24-8.75 µg·mL-1. Most species showed TPC and AAI values similar to or higher than those for Camellia sinensis, a commonly consumed tea with strong antioxidant properties. The results reveal that the analyzed Myrtaceae species from the Cerrado possess high phenolic contents and antioxidant activities. Thus, they are a potential source of new natural antioxidants.