Melatonin, melatonin isomers and stilbenes in Italian traditional grape products and their antiradical capacity


Address reprint requests to Marcello Iriti, Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie ed Ambientali, Università degli Studi di Milano, via Celoria 26, 20133 Milano, Italy.



Although polyphenols represent the paradigm of the health-promoting effects ascribed to grape products, recently, attention has been paid to dietary melatonin, significantly present in Mediterranean foods. In this work, we measured melatonin, its isomers, stilbenes (trans- and cis-resveratrol and their glucosides, piceids) and total polyphenols in some different grape products (red, white and dessert wines, grape juices and Modena balsamic vinegars) of distinct Italian areas. We also evaluated their antiradical activity by DPPH· and ABTS·+ assays. For indoleamine analysis, the separation was carried out on a 1.7-μm C18 BEH column and the detection performed by means of mass spectrometry with electrospray ionization in positive ion mode with multiple reaction monitoring. The confirmation of the peak identity was accomplished by injection into the high-resolution system (Orbitrap) using accurate mass measurements (error below 1.0 ppm). Mass spectrometry analyses revealed, for the first time, the presence of melatonin in dessert wines and balsamic vinegars, as well as the occurrence of three different melatonin isomers in grape products.