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Antioxidant activity, phenolic and anthocyanin contents of various rhubarb (Rheum spp.) varieties

Authors

  • Gary R. Takeoka,

    Corresponding author
    • Western Regional Research Service, Agricultural Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture, Albany, CA, USA
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  • Lan Dao,

    1. Western Regional Research Service, Agricultural Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture, Albany, CA, USA
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  • Leslie Harden,

    1. Western Regional Research Service, Agricultural Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture, Albany, CA, USA
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  • Alberto Pantoja,

    1. Agricultural Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture, Fairbanks, AK, USA
    Current affiliation:
    1. Alberto Pantoja, United Nations, Food and Agriculture Organization, Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean, Vitacura, Santiago, Chile
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  • Joseph C. Kuhl

    1. Agricultural Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture, Palmer, AK, USA
    Current affiliation:
    1. Joseph C. Kuhl, Department of Plant, Soil, and Entomological Sciences, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID, USA
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Correspondent: Fax: +1 510 559 5828;

e-mail: gary.takeoka@ars.usda.gov

Summary

Antioxidant activity (ABTS assay), total phenolics and total anthocyanins were determined in the petioles of twenty-nine rhubarb (Rheum spp.) varieties. Antioxidant activity ranged from 463 ± 50 (Rheum officinale) to 1242 ± 2 μmol Trolox per g DW (Valentine). The phenolic content varied from 673 ± 41 (Loher Blut) to 4173 ± 23 mg GAE/100 g DW (Plum Hutt) and had a low correlation (= 0.663) with antioxidant results. Seven of the varieties (Plum Hutt, Valentine, Minnesota No. 8, Cherry Red, Cawood Delight, Coulter McDonald and OR 23) had higher total phenolics than kale, a vegetable rich in phenolics. The concentration of anthocyanins ranged from 19.8 ± 1.5 (Crimson Red) to 341.1 ± 41.6 mg/100 g DW (Valentine). The percentages of two main anthocyanins in rhubarb, cyanidin 3-glucoside and cyanidin 3-rutinoside varied from 66.07:33.93, respectively, in Valentine to 9.36:90.64, respectively, in R. officinale.

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