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Phenolic Compounds and Anti-oxidant Capacity of Twelve Morphologically Heterogeneous Bamboo species


D. Deforce and A. Heyerick, Laboratory of Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Ghent University, Harelbekestraat 72 B-9000 Ghent, Belgium. E-mail:;



Despite the growing interest in the use of bamboo for both food and health-related applications because it provides a rich source of anti-oxidants, there is still a lack of information on the responsible secondary metabolites of the great variety of bamboo species.


To extend the knowledge on secondary metabolites of different bamboo species and to link anti-oxidant capacity with the different classes of phenolic compounds that are present in the leaves.


Chromatographic profiles of 12 morphological heterogeneous bamboo species from different genera were recorded using HPLC-DAD (diode array detector) and LC-MS/MS. In addition, the in vitro anti-oxidant capacity was evaluated using a variety of anti-oxidant assays (1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl, Trolox-equivalent anti-oxidant capacity and oxygen radical absorbance capacity). Using partial least square (PLS) analysis as a chemometric method, the anti-oxidant capacity could be linked to specific groups of polyphenols.


Flavones and phenolic acids are the two main polyphenolic classes present in the leaf extracts of the 12 selected bamboo species. Luteolin derivatives and phenolic acids were identified as the most potent anti-oxidants.


The most abundant classes of phenolic compounds present in a selection of bamboo species were flavone glycosides and phenolic acids. Luteolin flavones and phenolic acids are the main anti-oxidant phenolic compounds in bamboo leaf extract. The information obtained in this study provides further support for the development of bamboo-based anti-oxidant food applications and food supplements. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.