Antioxidant Activity of 50 Traditional Chinese Medicinal Materials Varies with Total Phenolics


This study was designed to determine the total phenolic content of 50 herbs and to examine their antioxidant potential. In the sample preparation, 60% ethanol was chosen as the extraction solvent for the subsequent experiments. Folin-Cicolteau phenol reagent and a colorimetric method were used to determine the total phenolic content of the selected herbs. The result showed that total phenolic content of those herbs ranged from 2 to 185 mg/g. In antioxidant assay, the ferric reducing/antioxidant power (FRAP) values ranged from 2 to 134 mg GAE/g; the IC50 values of DPPH ·, ·OH and  scavenging were in the range of 0.06 - 5.50 mg/mL, 0.017 - 0.636 mg/mL and 0.050 - 0.681 mg/mL respectively. Flos caryophylli was the exceptant in the  scavenging assay because there was no linear relation between the concentration and the scavenging percentage. Compared to gallic acid, ascorbic acid and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) in antioxidant assay as positive control, the most potential antioxidant herbs were Cacumen platycladi, Radix et Rhizoma rhei, Rhizoma rhodiolae crenulatae, and Rhizoma sanguisorbae with considerable content of phenolics. Especially, a positive and significant correlation was found between the total phenolic content and FRAP value or DPPH· scavenging percentage.

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He, Z. , Lan, M. , Lu, D. , Zhao, H. and Yuan, H. (2013) Antioxidant Activity of 50 Traditional Chinese Medicinal Materials Varies with Total Phenolics. Chinese Medicine, 4, 148-156. doi: 10.4236/cm.2013.44018.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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