Bioactive compounds in pollen of Cynara cardunculus var. altilis: first results
Artichoke and cardoon, typical vegetables of the Mediterranean environment, are known for their high content of biologically active metabolites. These compounds have long been investigated in all parts of the plant (stalks, leaves, heads), but pollen has never been analysed. Due of the growing interest of the nutraceutical sector towards bee pollen for its high nutritional value and considering that its chemical composition varies with botanical origin, in this work cardoon pollen was examined for the first time. The total phenolic and flavonoid content in the pollen of Cynara cardunculus var. altilis was evaluated and compared with the one present in the leaves. Furthermore, the major biologically active metabolites of the cardoon were determined and quantified by HPLC-UV/Vis. The results showed that total phenolic and flavonoid content in the pollen was about 7 times greater than in the leaves, with values in the average equal to 432.03 mg GAE 100 g‑1 FW and 100.78 mg QE 100 g‑1 FW, respectively. By the analysis of phenolic compounds emerged that comparing cardoon pollen with leaves the phenolic acids examined disappear while there is a strong increase of apigenin and its derivatives. In conclusion, these first results have shown that cardoon pollen is the part of the plant with the highest content of bioactive molecules, with a prevalence of flavonoids.
Genovese, C., Leonardi, C., Arlotta, C., Venticinque, M., Toscano, V. and Raccuia, S.A. (2020). Bioactive compounds in pollen of Cynara cardunculus var. altilis: first results. Acta Hortic. 1284, 271-278
cardoon, polyphenols, flavonoids, HPLC-UV/Vis