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A spectrophotometric method for plant pigments determination and herbs classification

Gabriela Dudek, Anna Strzelewicz, Monika Krasowska, Aleksandra Rybak, and Roman Turczyn

Department of Physical Chemistry and Technology of Polymers, Faculty of Chemistry, Silesian University of Technology, Strzody 9, 44-100, Gliwice, Poland



Abstract: Twenty herbs, showing medicinal benefits on human life, like Taraxacum officinale, Plantago lanceolata, Hypericum perforatum, Ocimum basilicum, Melissa officinalis, Mentha piperita, and others, were tested. The percentage content of pigments, i.e. chlorophylls, carotenoids, and flavonoids, in the chosen herbs was determined. The spectrophotometric method, which is quick and readily available, was used. Measurements required pigment extraction with a solvent. Ethanol was used for the determination of chlorophylls and carotenoids, and acetone for the determination of flavonoids. Hierarchical agglomerative cluster analysis was performed in order to confirm the experimental results. The study of flavonoids content showed an interesting regularity which can be used for the classification of herbs. Plants belonging to the Lamiaceae family showed the flavonoids content in the range from 0.18 % to 0.68 %, whereas those belonging to the Apiaceaehas family showed the flavonoids content in the 0.75–1.20 % range.

Keywords: herbs – plant pigments – spectroscopy – flavonoids – carotenoids – chlorophylls

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.2478/s11696-013-0502-x


Chemical Papers 68 (5) 579–583 (2014)

Tuesday, May 28, 2024

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