HPLC/DAD, GC/MS and GC/GC/TOF analysis of Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis L.) sample as standarlized raw material for food and nutraceutical uses

F. Ieri, L. Cecchi, P. Vignolini, M.F. Belcaro, A. Romani


Melissa officinalis L., commonly known as lemon balm, is a perennial herb belonging to Lamiaceae family. Traditionally administered in infusion form, it has therapeutic properties, such as sedative, carminative and antispasmodic, but also it is used for treatment of headache, rheumatism, indigestion and hypersensitivities. Lemon balm has a complex chemical composition. The aim of this work was the comprehensive characterization of secondary metabolites of a dried Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis L.) sample, through HPLC/DAD, GC/MS and GC/GC/TOF analysis, as raw material for the standardized phyto-complexes production useful for food and nutraceutical application. This sample contained rosmarinic acid (caffeic acid dimer) as the main compound of phenolic fraction (32.4 mg g-1). Citronellal was the most abundant compound in the volatile fraction, followed by α-citral and β-caryophyllene. The total citral amount, in terms of sum of α- and β-citral, was 149.4 mgcitral kg-1. Comprehensive two-dimensional GC fingerprint analysis of lemon balm produced rationalized peak patterns for up to 200 volatile compounds.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13128/ahs-21091

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