Phytochemicals and organic compounds of two Nigerian insecticidal plants
The samples of two Nigerian insecticidal plants Alligator pepper (Aframomum melegueta Zing) and Black pepper (Piper nigrum L.), were analyzed for their phytochemical composition and organic compounds. The evaluations were aimed at the fundamental scientific basis for the use of these plants by determining their chemical constituents as well as quantifying the percentage of phytochemicals and organic compounds present in the seeds of Piper nigrum and Aframomum melegueta.The experiment was conducted in the Chemistry laboratory of Michael Okpara University of Agriculture Umudike, between March-April, 2018. Results revealed the presence of bioactive constituents comprising: Alkaloids (85.67-50.13 mg 100-1g), Flavonoids (4.02-24.56 mg 100-1g), Saponins (7.52-5.51 mg 100-1g), Tannins (0.22-17.79 mg 100-1g), and Phenols (0.71-2.01 mg 100-1g). The two plant extracts contained organic compounds OH, COOH and C=O respectively as functional groups and alcohol, phenol, carboxylic acid and ketones as compound types detected, with aromatic compounds found in Aframomum melegueta. The bioactive compounds were responsible for the insecticidal related properties of Piper nigrum and Aframomum melegueta. The detected bioactive compounds proved the importance of the two plants from insecticidal point of view and invites additional research for characterization of these phytochemicals and their proper evaluation for pest control in Nigeria.
Keywords: Aframomum melegueta, bioactives, Piper nigrum, Phytochemicals