Analysis of phenolic compounds in different parts of pomegranate (Punica granatum) fruit by HPLC-PDA-ESI/MS and evaluation of their antioxidant activity: application to different Italian varieties.Anal Bioanal Chem. 2018 Jun; 410(15):3507-3520.AB
The analysis of pomegranate phenolic compounds belonging to different classes in different fruit parts was performed by high-performance liquid chromatography coupled with photodiode array and mass spectrometry detection. Two different separation methods were optimized for the analysis of anthocyanins and hydrolyzable tannins along with phenolic acids and flavonoids. Two C18 columns, core-shell and fully porous particle stationary phases, were used. The parameters for separation of phenolic compounds were optimized considering chromatographic resolution and analysis time. Thirty-five phenolic compounds were found, and 28 of them were tentatively identified as belonging to four different phenolic compound classes; namely, anthocyanins, phenolic acids, hydrolyzable tannins, and flavonoids. Quantitative analysis was performed with a mixture of nine phenolic compounds belonging to phenolic compound classes representative of pomegranate. The method was then fully validated in terms of retention time precision, expressed as the relative standard deviation, limit of detection, limit of quantification, and linearity range. Phenolic compounds were analyzed directly in pomegranate juice, and after solvent extraction with a mixture of water and methanol with a small percentage of acid in peel and pulp samples. The accuracy of the extraction method was also assessed, and satisfactory values were obtained. Finally, the method was used to study identified analytes in pomegranate juice, peel, and pulp of six different Italian varieties and one international variety. Differences in phenolic compound profiles among the different pomegranate parts were observed. Pomegranate peel samples showed a high concentration of phenolic compounds, ellagitannins being the most abundant ones, with respect to pulp and juice samples for each variety. With the same samples, total phenols and antioxidant activity were evaluated through colorimetric assays, and the results were correlated among them.