Nigerian Journal of Nutritional Sciences

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Terpene profile of dietary herbs (Alstonia boonei, Securidaca longepedunculata and Uvaria chamae) from south-eastern Nigeria

A.A. Obiloma, W.C. Madu, G.O. Osuji, P.C. Ogbonna, A.N. Maduforo


Background: Tarpenes are phytochemicals found in plants especially cannabis. They are sometimes called terpenoids which are the primary constituents of the essential oil. Terpenes are used in cosmetics, perfumes production, traditional medicines and as a food additive to improve aroma. Vitamin A is a form of terpene.

Objective: This study determined the terpene profile of dietary herbs (Alstonia boonei, Securidaca longepedunculata and Uvaria chamae) from South-eastern Nigeria.

Methods: Alstonia boonei stem bark, Securidaca longepedunculata roots and Uvaria chamae roots were obtained from the forest at Akama in Orsu Local government Area, Imo State, Nigeria. The samples were washed and air dried for 2 weeks at 26oC, oven dried in air hot cabinet oven at of 60O for 30 minutes. The dried materials were ground to powder with Marlex electroline grinder. Obtained powder was analyzed for the presence of terpene content using full evaporation technique (FET) headspace gas chromatography flame ionization detector (GC-FID) method. This analysis was performed by Anresco laboratories, San Francisco, CA, United State of America. The percentage content of the terpenes was reported in Tables.

Results: Results showed presence of terpenes in unquantifiable amounts in bark of Alstonia booneii stem, presence of only α–bisabolol in quantifiable amount in roots of Securidaca longepedunculata and α-pinene, α–humelene, menthol, camphene, β–myrcene, d 3-carene, p-cymene and isopulegol in Uvaria chamae roots.

Conclusion: The terpene levels of the herbs compared to the levels in cannabis were low.

Keywords: Uvaria chamae, Alstonia boonei, Securidaca longepedunculata, terpenes

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