Bioactive Compounds in Regional Fruits

Universidad Nacional del Nordeste - Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales y Agrimensura

February 13, 2012 | 3 ′ 52 ′′


Bioactive Compounds in Regional Fruits


It is the first study which could determine the anti-oxidant capacity and content of the main bioactive compounds present in guava, blackberry and guayibu fruits, three wild fruits of Cuyo’s region whose consumption might be favorable to prevent chronic diseases. We expect that the work is useful as a basis to advance in the knowledge of these fruits’ potential, so that they can be massively consumed and used in the industry to take advantage from products derived from them.

The project is framed within a major research line which analyzes nutritional and sensorial changes in vegetal products minimally processed of Argentina’s North East region which is led by Dr. Sonia Sgroppo, director of the Laboratory of Chemical Technology and Bromatology.

The study emerged due to the fact that in the provinces of Argentina’s North East there is a great variety of wild fruits whose nutritional characteristics are unknown, as well as the lack of a systematic study about their content of bioactive substances and anti-oxidant capacity.

Among some of these trees there is guava, guabiyu and blackberry, whose wild fruits are consumed by a few people in the area and which stand out by their taste. Some of them are very appreciated in other regions of the world.

So, in these three fruits we seek to determine their anti-oxidant capacity, the content of sugar, polyphenols and pigments. In the guava and guabiyu there were quantified the levels of total carotenoids and in the blackberries the anthocyanins. For the study, we worked with different varieties coming from different places of the provinces Corrientes and Chaco.

“According to the results, we can say that guava, guabiyu and blackberry fruits in the region are a good source of bioactive compounds and their consumption might be profitable to prevent chronic diseases” explained to InfoUniversidades Dr. Sgroppo and Maida Cedaro, student of the career Biochemistry and pre-graduate scholarship holder.

The phytochemical active compounds can be defined as biologically active compounds present in vegetal food which have a protection effect on humans to face neurodegenerative diseases, so eating them if beneficial for the health. That is why it is important to be able to characterize these components which, apart from ensuring the consumption, permit to observe the beneficial qualities for the body.

Cedaro explained that there were observed differences in the fruits, most of all in the guava and blackberry according to the places they came from, which might be related to the influence of climate and soil variables.

Regarding the results in detail, the guabiyu presented a higher amount of total sugar, followed by the blackberries and the guavas and among the guava fruits, the red ones are those which have a higher content of sugar than the white varieties. We also found a higher percentage of reducer sugar (glucose and fructose) in the blackberries compared to the guavas.

The content of total polyphenols was higher in the blackberries and the guavas showed a higher content than the guabiyu. The total carotenoids present in the white guavas were higher than in the red variety. The greatest amounts of anthocyanins were for the blackberries in Corrientes.

Finally, regarding the anti-oxidant activity the study determined that the higher activity was shown by blackberry fruits, followed by the guavas and guabiyu. It was found a direct relation between the content of polyphenols and the anti-oxidant capacity, that is, that blackberry fruits had the highest content of polyphenols and the higher anti-oxidant activity.

Juan Monzón Gramajo
monzongramajo@hotmail.com
José Goretta
Departamento de Comunicación Institucional


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