Antioxidant activity screening of extracts from Sideritis species (Labiatae) grown in Bulgaria

I. Koleva, J.P.H. Linssen, T.A. van Beek, L.N. Evstatieva, V. Kortenska, N. Handjieva

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Plant samples from several species and populations of the genus Sideritis (Labiatae) grown in Bulgaria (S scardica, S syriaca and S montana) were extracted with different solvents. Their antioxidant activities were determined by the -carotene bleaching test (BCBT), 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging method and static headspace gas chromatography (HS-GC) and compared with the antioxidant activity of two reference compounds of different polarity, viz butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) and rosmarinic acid. The pure reference compounds were applied in a ten-times lower concentration than the plant extracts. The highest antioxidant activity in the BCBT, close to that of BHT, was observed for the more apolar extracts. The inhibitory effect on -carotene bleaching of the polar extracts and rosmarinic acid was much lower than that of BHT. The inhibition of hexanal formation in bulk safflower oil by most of S syriaca and S scardica extracts was as effective as BHT but less so than rosmarinic acid. S montana extracts showed weak antioxidant or even pro-oxidant properties. Extracts from butanol and from ethyl acetate and the total methanol extracts from all Sideritis plants studied showed a strong radical scavenging activity against DPPH, close to that of rosmarinic acid. S montana extracts were, as a whole, slightly weaker radical inhibitors than the extracts from the other two species. The antioxidant activity of Sideritis extracts was attributed to the presence of flavonoid and phenylpropanoid glycosides
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)809-819
JournalJournal of the Science of Food and Agriculture
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2003


  • radical-scavenging activity
  • oxidative stability
  • plant-extracts
  • oil
  • flavonoids
  • glycosides
  • emulsions


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