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Growth, Phenolic Compounds and Antioxidant Activity of Some Medicinal Plants Grown under Organic Farming Condition
lMY. Khalil, 2A.A. Moustafa and lNY. Naguib
'Department of Cultivation and Production of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants, N.RC., Giza, Egypt 2Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Agriculture, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt Eight medicinal plants were cultivated in the Experimental Farm Station of the National Research Centre at Shalakan Kalubia Governorate, Egypt, during the two consecutive seasons 2003/2004. Plants were grown under organic farming conditions, as the soil was treated with organic compost without using mineral or chemical fertilization. The herbs of the plants were harvested and subjected to the estimation of phenolic compounds and antioxidative activities in their extracts. The results showed that plant growth parameters varied greatly. Marigold plants were significantly the highest, while sage plants resulted significantly in the heaviest fresh and dry herb weight. Salicylic acid was the highest phenolic compound, compared to the other fourteen phenolics. Salicylic was present in high contents in all studied plants except sage which contained the largest quantity of pyrogallic acid. Catechol, protocatechenic and cinnamic acid were the phenolics present in the lowest quantity. Different plants greatly varied in the contents of the phenolic compounds. Antioxidant activity increased as ethanol extract raised from 100 to 150 and 200r.tl extract. Sage showed very strong antioxidant capacity (91.34% inhibition of peroxidation at 200 ul extract), followed by dragonhead and plantago. Other plants showed moderate antioxidant activities. Further work on the effect of organic farming compared to chemical one on phenolics and antioxidant activity as well as on different medicinal plants are suggested.
Key words: Phenolic compounds· antioxidative activities' marigold (Calendula o.fficinalis) . dragonhead (Dracocephalum moldavica L.) . fennel tFoeniculum vulgare) . plantago (Plantago. afra L.) . clary (Salvia verbenaca) . sage (Salvia viridis) . sideritis (Sideritis montana) . milk thistle (Silybum marianum) INTRODUCTION Approximately 80% of the world population depend exclusively on plants for their health and healing. Whereas in the developed world, reliance on surgery and pharmaceutical medicine is more usual but in the recent years, more and more people are complementing their treatment with natural supplements . Furthermore, motivation of people towards herbs are increasing due to their concern about the side effect of drugs, those are prepared from synthetic materials. The people want to concern their own health rather than merely submitting themselves to impersonal health care system. Many botanical and some common dietary supplements are good sources of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds [2, 3].
Plant materials containing phenolic constituents are increasingly of interest as they retard oxidative degradation of lipids and thereby improving quality and nutritional value of food [4, 5]. The importance of the antioxidant constituents of plant material is the maintained of health and protection from coronary heart disease and cancer . They are vital substances that possess the ability to protect the body from damage caused by free radical induced oxidative stress [7,8]. Several researches on the phenolic constituents and antioxidant activities in various plants have been conducted [9-13]. Meanwhile, Galvez et al.  pointed out that there was a correlation between antioxidant capacity and phenolics content. However, Kahkonen et al.  stated that antioxidants activity does not necessarily correlate with high amounts of phenolics.
Dr. M.Y. Khalil, Department of Cultivation and Production of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants,
N.R.C., Giza, Egypt
56 dsm ".466 and 1.56% ash. China and Egypt . as on some aromatic plants . Salvia verbenaca (Clary) Family Laminacae. 3. phenolic compounds and oxidative activities of eight aromatic and medicinal plants grown under organic farming conditions. (milk thistle. Sideritis (Sideritis montana L.0 pH. Family Labiatae. The herbs were harvested at 15th February 2004 and 2005 and the following data was assessed: 452 . mary thistle) Family Asteraceae. in plots of 3. Family Apiaceae is a short-lived aromatic and medicinal herb. Herb drunk has been recommended as a very helpful in all women's diseases and ailments . It is well known as cleansing and detoxifying herb  and antiviral. violent cases of hysteria . 3. P and K.06m2 (1. The soil was thoroughly plows and mixed with organic compost. Its medicinal virtues are rather more powerful for disordered of states of digestion. 2007 Organic farming was recommended by United Nations Organizations [14. 21]. in between and the distances between plants were 35cm. 18. Galvez et al. on rosmary (Rosemarinus officinalis) . Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare Mill.. were carried out whenever required. 7. Organic manuring have beneficial impacts on soil properties and produce safe plants with good. Agriculture routine practices as irrigation. clary (Salvia verbenaca). 41. 39. Every plot contained 25 plants. has an important pharmaceutical utilization to treat a variety of disorders . showed also good antioxidant activity.75m) on rows 35cm. 8. 18]. have mutagenic and cytotoxic properties . Egypt.4% moisture content. Plantago (Plantago afra L. a product of Green Valley for Orgainc Products Co. erect. weeding . in the Experimental Farm Station of National Research Centre..  pointed out that sage have a potential source of antioxidants of natural organ as its extract possess a significant scavenger activity against DPPH free radical and an inhibitory effect on HP2.6% fine sand. 17. from the latin "Salvere". 1.1. MIl. 3 (4): 451-457. analgestic and antioxidant activities. at the rate l Smvfeddan. It can help reverse the damage done from eating poisonous mushrooms.11 % total nitrogen. on fennel [20.). Many investigators obtained best results by using organic compost for several medicinal and aromatic plants. plantago (Plantago afra L. 512ppm total soluble salts. The properties of the compost were: 35. 30. 2.2. 16: 1 C/N ratio and 1. Dracocephalum moldavica L.. an annual.6 mg " DTPA extractable Fe. Greeks and Arab . SAE.75 X 1. sage (Salvia viridisi. PcPP 5) and K(KP) respectively and 22. Calendula officinalis (marigold) was cultivated by Egyptians.C. 0.0 and 401ppm N.  observed that Plantago spp. vegetables and beverages . 0. on three Mentha species .2 mmhos/cm" EC. is a hardy annual plant with aromatic. Silybum marianum Gaertn. indigenous to Europe and cultivated in India.6% organic matter. antitumer.1 and 2.89% organic carbon. neat sources of better availability of nutrients [17. 263.). balm scented. Zn and Cu consecutively. 38. The treatments were replicated thrice. glandular-hairy caulescent herb . sideritis (Sideritis montana) and milk thistle (Silybum marianum) were sown at 15th October of both seasons. meaning to heal. save or to be safe and unharmed indicating the medical value of the plants of salvia. Family Plantaginaceae. green foliage .. The experimental soil was clay loamy having the following properties: 5. Sage (Salvia viridis) is antioxidant in cheeses. Erdemoglu et al.21% total N. Medicinal and aromatic plants a gift of nature are being used against various infections and diseases in the world since past history.3% coarse sand. Sci. the leaves of plant have white veins that look as if milk was spilled upon them-according to legend.7% silt and 25. respectively. 45. This study aimed to estimate the vegetative growth characters. Egypt. Choi and Hwang  stated that fennel had antiinflamatory. MA TERIAL AND METHODS Eight medicinal plants were cultivated under organic farming conditions at two successive seasons of 2003/2004 and 2004/2005. on Hyosyamus muticus  and on Sidritis montana . etc. Its extract has an oxidative activity attributed to the presence of flavonoids and phenlpropanoid glycosides .). (dragonhead) a member of Family Lamiaceae. the milk of the Virgin Mary. dragonhead (Dracocephalum moldavica L. fennel (Foeniculum vulgare). at Shalakan Kalubia Governorate.2% CaCo].4. is famous in curing a whole range of liver and gall bladder.9.0 mg/kg ammonium nitrate. Its leaves has an oxidant capacity more than vitamins C and E. pickles.World J Agric.). It is a painkiller  and antitumer and anti-rheumatic . Seeds of marigold (Calendula officinalisi. E. 15] as it ensures safety products for human health as well as environments . 0.4% clay. It had a long history of popular traditional uses as medicine in many countries for treating various diseases varying from cold to cancer and viral hepatitis . is native to Mediterranean.).1 pH.
The marigold was significantly the highest plant (90. pH 7. Linoleic acid emulsion (0. Chemical analysis: 1-Sample preparation: Fresh herb of the eight kinds of plants were collected. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION Growth parameters: Data presented in Table 1 indicated that the eight medicinal plants varied greatly in their growth parameters. Dry weight of the herbs attained similar trend to their fresh weights.1 ml). condenser temperature -45°C.65. Using a hypersil Cl8 reversed-phase column (250 x 4. 3 (4): 451-457.D.02 M) was prepared with linoleic acid (0.. which were 266. • Blank was carried out in similar procedure and its value was subtracted from the obtained values of the treatments. 4-Antioxidant activity in a linoleic acid system: Antioxidant activity assay was carried out by using the linoleic acid system. were obtained when the calculated 'F' values were significant at 5% level . using an UV detector set at wavelength 254 nm . consecutively. The reaction mixture was incubated at 37°C in the dark and the degree of oxidation was measured according to the thiocyanate method (0. USA) and Rom MerckShcuchrdt (Munich.. Data obtained (mean of the two seasons).5% acetic acid in distilled water at pH 2.World J Agric.2804 mg) and Tween 20 (0.5mm sieve and allowed to equilibrate in open air. the peroxide value was determined by reading the absorbance at 500 nm and the inhibition percentage of linoleic acid peroxidation was calculated as (%) inhibition [l-(absorbance of sample at 500 nm)/(absorbance of control at 500 nm)] x 100. approximately 2ml was filtered through a 0. All tests were run in duplicate and analysis of all samples was done in triplicate. All chemical and solvents used were HPLC spectral grade.5% acetic acid in 99. as weighed 147 and 38. 2-Extraction and hydrolysis: The phenolic compounds were extracted according to Hertog et al. 2007 Vegetative growth: A sample of five plants in each replicate were randomly taken and the following characters were recorded: plant height (ern) from soil surface to the summit of the plant and fresh and dry weights (g/plant).6 mm) with 5 urn particle size.2 M HCl in 50% aqueous methanol (v/v). followed by fennel (75.5% acetonitrile. Other plants varied between the highest and lowest plants with significant differences among them. Sci. lOml of 6 M HCl was added to this extract with careful mixing. Sage produced significantly the heaviest fresh and dry weights of the herb. .4 and 76.45-1m filter for organic solvents prior to injection. Louis. Standard phenolic compounds were obtained from Sigma (St.0 em).2804 g) in phosphate buffer (50 ml. The siderites herb which came in the second rank. pressure 0. The fresh and dry weights of the eight plants herb were in a • • 453 . Extracts were prepared as follows: 40 ml of 62.5 ml) and phosphate buffer (2.4 ern. pH 7. 0. the freeze-dried tissues were ground to pass a 0.1 ml. 30%) and sample solution (0. the extract was allowed to cool and was subsequently made up to 100ml with methanol and sonicated for 5 min. Whereas plantain plants were significantly the shortest ones with mean height of 28.0) were mixed with a homogenizer. After lyophilization. Germany Chemical Companies). except between clary and siderites.5g. 3-High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) analysis: Identification of individual phenolic compounds of the plant extracts was performed on a Hewlett-Packard HPLC (Model 1100).4).5% aqueous methanol was added to 0. and solvent (B) 0.5 g of freeze-dried sample material. compared to most plants. A reaction solution. After the mixture was stirred for 3 min. with significant differences among most of them. The concentration of an individual compound was calculated on the basis of peak area measurements and then converted to mg phenolicll OOg dry weight. Phenolic compounds of each sample were identified by comparing their relative retention times with those of the standards mixture chromatogram. were subjected to standard analysis of variance procedure and the values of L. The layout of the investigation was designed to provide complete randomized (CRD).8g fresh and dry weight.6 cm). A constant flow rate of 1 ml min'l was used with two mobile phases: (A) 0. 0. The elution gradient was linear starting with (A) and ending with (B) over 35 min. Linoleic acid emulsion (2. containing extracts (50-200 )11). The extraction solution thus obtained consisted of 1.3 ml. Injection by means of a Rheodyne injection valve (Model 7125).S. After refluxing at 90°C for 2h with regular swirling. respectively.01 m bar).05 M. cleaned and immediately stored at 20°C until lyophilized (Delta.2 m.
16mgll OOmg dry weight.3 12. sideritis (0.4 Fresh weight (g/plant) 133.22 12.8 50.12 65.17 17.09 0. Salicylic acid ranged between 449.48 mg) in marigold.72 18.29 0.55 4.63 77.55 mg).89 23.7 86. resorcinol (55.W. 6 = Plantain.52 0.56 6.1 27. 8= Sideritis 454 .29 23.5 98.00 6. The eight plants under study showed great variations in their content of the different phenolic compounds.67 mg) and plantain (0.43 38. 3 = Fennel.5 26. hydroquinone.0 266.) Plants Phenolic compounds Pyrogallic acid Hydroquinone Resorcinol Protochatechenic Catechol Hydroxyl benzoic Chlorogonic acid Phenol Vanillin p-coumric acid Ferulic acid Salicylic acid o-coumaric acid Coumrin Cinnamic acid 1.76 16.56 14.04 6. 3 (4): 451-457.64 77.46 11.0 70.55mg in milk thistle herb.25 34.3 18.64 0.44 29.30 1.5 38.12 5.52 1 = Clary.39 53.26 83. but its content in the other herbs was very low as it ranged between 0.94 2. protocatechuic.13 16.20 12.46 mg each).47 5.53 13.89 362.58 7 259. In this concern Bailey  and Hartnoll  reported that different plants vary greatly in their heights and vegetative growth characters as well as their flowering characteristics.94 0. coumrin. These constituents were catechol.) <plantain (Plantago afra L.69 mg) in milk thistle.48 5. was absent in these two plants only.46 2 26.75 34.68 4.17 8. coumarin (75. salicylic acid was the major phenolic compound in the herb of all the studied plants.58 181.40 1.88 0. fennel (6. Fifteen phenolic compounds were identified in plant herbs extracts (Table 2). ferulic acid.45 6 34.01 1.00 98.93 3. 7= Sage.15 1.6 44.11 26.02 75.67 73.World J Agric..0 61.63 2.86 0. 5= Milk thistle.19 97. milk thistle (23.55 55.4 147. resorcinol.40 mg).15 19.53 2.01 6.94 mg) and sideritis (2.39 3 13. ferulic acid (53. p-coumric acid.45 and 26.42 12. except in sage which pyrogallic acid was the major phenolic compound.16 5 7. phenol.10 2.86 89.) <milk thistle (Silybum marianum) with significant differences in most cases.45 111.73 7.9 descending order as the following: sage (Salvia viridis)<sideritis (Sideritis montana) <marigold (Calendula officinalis) fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) < clary (Salvia verbenaca) < dragonhead (Dracocephalum moldavica L.13 and 1.67 10.72 33.55 32.41 4 11.94 4.19 mg).3 Dry weight (g/plant) 36.55 3.9 181.8 27. the largest phenolic compounds after salicylic acid were pyrogallic acid and p-coumric acid in clary (77.46 8.54mg in fennel and 83.08 0.05 (cm) 90. consecutively. 4 = Marigold.8 60.71 220.54 14.89 34.18 12. salicylic acid and vanillin.29 8.03 7.76 18.72 mg).04 26.33 27. in clary and marigold.88 63.3 75. respectively.18 7.49 5.73 8.41 34.8 5.88 10.1 48. Regarding different plants.00 5. The least phenolic constituent was catechol which was detected in two plants only.6 28.2 94.47 mg) in dragonhead and fennel. In general. cinnamic acid.34 1. chlorogenic. Sci.02 16.98 8 17.05 1. 2 = Dragonhead.06 44. hydroxylbenzoic.58 mg) in plantain and Phenolic compounds: Table 2: The concentrations of phenolic compounds in eight medicinal herbs at their vegetative stage (mgll00g D.77 11.69 0.00 30.58 28.98 61.4 51.6 76.84 31. pyrogallic acid. 2007 Table 1: Growth parameters for the medicinal plants grown under organic farming condition Growth character Plant height Plants Calendula officina/is (marigold) Dracocephalum moldavica (dragonhead) Foeniculum vulgare (fennel) Plantago aJi'a (plantago) Salvia verbenaca (clary) Salvia viridis (sage) Sideritis montana (siderites) Silybum marianum (milk thistle) LSD at 0.4 2.52 7. o-coumaric acid. whereas proto-catechuic. Hydroquinone was detected in four plants only: marigold (63.48 1.00 139.92 14.47 449. pyrogallic acid (34.
Most of the examined herbs showed moderate antioxidant capacity.43 46.69 and 69.14±3.72±3.41.69 53.84 71. 01 69.40 mg). 84 3.01 68.56 mgll 00 g dry weight. Sci. Kahkonen et al.0.71 91. The phenolic compound showed marked variation in herb of the studied plants. The lowest phenolic compound content in plantain was catechol (0. Such results coincide with those of Bol'shakova et al.63 and 1. 86±2.74±4.74±3. 150 and 200 )11 ethanol extract. Any other phenolic compounds mounted to half the content of salicylic. The material extracts had overall good antioxidant activity.31±2. Marigold was the highest plants. with significant differences in most cases.11% at 100. 14±3.51 79. The lowest 455 inhibition % was in the marigold extract with a percentage of 44.Ll extract 44.69±2.63±3.34±4.34±4. without significant differences between them. varieties and cultivars.35 3. except the sage which had the largest content of pyrogallic acid. The results agrees with Nakatani  that phenolic compounds ranged between plants according to their genus species.  stated that natural antioxidants are usually phenolic and polyphenolic compounds. More work on the benefits of organic farming compared to mineral .W.47 68.74±4.18±2. fennel.99 64. Salicylic acid was the major phenolic in all plants herb.11 2. but in siderites and milk thistle it was the cinnamic acid at the rates of 0. Antioxidant activity: Antioxidant activities at three different concentrations of ethanol (100..  mentioned that plantago plant had more antioxidant property than Salvia officinalis.  and Kim et al.74 and 63. 150 and 200 )11 extract) was evaluated against linoleic acid peroxidation in the reaction mixture of the eight medicinal plant herbs are presented in Table 3.71±2.27±2. sage.78±3. 49.0.94 150 J. While the lowest compounds content were protochatechenic at the rates of 0.11 61.World J Agric.11±2. Sage herb extract was characterized with the highest antioxidant activity (inhibition %) which was about 9l.45 and 0.11±3. Antioxidants are vital substances which possess the ability to protect body from damage by free radical-induced oxidative stress .99 resorcinol (97. but sage plant produced the heaviest herb weight.52. Velioglu et al. 14±3. dragonhead and plantain herb showed considerably strong antioxidant response (over 87% inhibition) on 200)1 ethanol extract.Ll extract 49.16mgilOO g dry weight in clary. 2007 Table 3: Antioxidant activity of ethanol extracted for eight medicinal hems at their vegetative stage (mgll00 g D.0. respectively.86.l1 for the two aforementioned plants. CONCLUSION It can be noted that the studied plants grown under organic farming conditions varied greatly in their growth characters.1l %) at 200 )11 extract whereas at 100 )11 ethanol extract inhibition % was 71.11 77.21±3.61±4.90 200 ul extract 63.41 83.81±3.81 53. 3 (4): 451-457.05 -Each value is expressed as mean±SE (n = 3) 100 J.52mg) in siderites.) Inhibition of peroxidation (%) Plants Calendula officina/is (marigold) Dracocephalum moldavica (dragonhead) Foeniculum vulgare (fennel) Plantago afia (plantin) Salvia verbenaca (clary) Salvia viridis (sage) Sideritis montana (siderites) Silybum marianum (milk thistle) LSD at 0.86 71. Sage.74±3.37 88.98 73. The inhibition of Me Lo hydroperoxides of plant extracts decreased in the following order: sage< dragonhead<plantian<clary<fennel<sideritis< milk thistle< marigold.11 76.  reported that sage leaves extracts showed reasonable antioxidant activity.48 87.  concluded that 90 different plants extracts varied widely in their antioxidant activities.71±3. respectively.98% followed by the dragonhead extract (88.13.74±2. dragonhead and marigold herb.74±3.21 80.78±3. successively.01 64. Antioxidant activity expressed as percentage of inhibition of peroxidation in herb extracts attained the following order: sage (Salvia viridis)<dragonhead (Dracocephalum moldavica)<plantain (Plantago afra)< clary (Salvia verbenaca)<fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) sideritis (Sideritis montana )<milk thistle (Silybum marianum)<marigold (Calendula officinalis). The results revealed that the inhibition of peroxidation was progressively increased by raising ethanol concentration.11 68. Trojakova et al.64±2.
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