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Analysis of triterpenoids, carotenoids, and phenylpropanoids in the flowers, leaves, roots, and stems of white bitter melon (Cucurbitaceae, <i>Momordica charantia</i>)

Do Manh Cuong
Ramaraj Sathasivam
Chang Ha Park
Hyeon Ji Yeo
Ye Eun Park
Jae Kwang Kim
Sang Un Park


Purpose: To evaluate the contents of carotenoids, triterpenoids, and phenylpropanoids in different parts of white bitter melon.
Methods: We evaluated the accumulation of 2 triterpenoids, 10 carotenoids, and 11 phenylpropanoids in different parts of white bitter melon, including fruits at four different developmental stages using HPLC.
Results: Charantin, lutein, and rutin were the main triterpenoids, carotenoids, and phenylpropanoids, respectively. The accumulation of triterpenoids (momordicine and charantin), carotenoids (antheraxanthin, lutein, violaxanthin, α-carotene, and β-carotene), and phenylpropanoids (caffeic acid, chlorogenic acid, epicatechin, gallic acid, p-coumaric acid, rutin, and trans-cinnamic acid) was high in
the leaves and/or flowers, which are exposed to direct sunlight, but low in the roots.
Conclusion: Most of the analyzed components were accumulated at high levels in the leaves and/or flowers. These results will help exploit the compounds in various parts of white bitter melon that are beneficial for human health.

Keywords: Momordica charantia, Bitter melon, Triterpenoid, Carotenoid, Phenylpropanoid