221 research outputs found

    Hypericum species identification to assess the authenticity of plant food supplements

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    In the last years, medicinal plants and derived products have become increasingly available in the EU market as ingredients of formulations sold as food supplements. This type of products is legally considered as food under the Directive 2002/46/EC [l], thus with legal responsibility of its safety relying on business operators as they are not under the control of the European Medicines Agency (EMA).This work has been supported by FCT through grant PEst-C/EQB/LA0006/2013 and project EXPL/DTP-SAP/1438/2013 (Safety of PIant Food Supplements: searching for adulterant pharmaceutlcal drugs and plants)info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersio

    Authentication of ginkgo biloba herbal products by a novel quantitative real-time PCR approach

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    Ginkgo biloba is a widely used medicinal plant. Due to its potential therapeutic effects, it is an ingredient in several herbal products, such as plant infusions and plant food supplements (PFS). Currently, ginkgo is one of the most popular botanicals used in PFS. Due to their popularity and high cost, ginkgo-containing products are prone to be fraudulently substituted by other plant species. Therefore, this work aimed at developing a method for G. biloba detection and quantification. A new internal transcribe spacer (ITS) marker was identified, allowing the development of a ginkgo-specific real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay targeting the ITS region, with high specificity and sensitivity, down to 0.02 pg of DNA. Additionally, a normalized real-time PCR approach using the delta cycle quantification (ΔCq) method was proposed for the effective quantification of ginkgo in plant mixtures. The method exhibited high performance parameters, namely PCR efficiency, coefficient of correlation and covered dynamic range (50-0.01%), achieving limits of detection and quantification of 0.01% (w/w) of ginkgo in tea plant (Camellia sinensis). The quantitative approach was successfully validated with blind mixtures and further applied to commercial ginkgo-containing herbal infusions. The estimated ginkgo contents of plant mixture samples suggest adulterations due to reduction or almost elimination of ginkgo. In this work, useful and robust tools were proposed to detect/quantify ginkgo in herbal products, which suggests the need for a more effective and stricter control of such products.This work was supported by FCT (Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia) under the Partnership Agreements UIDB 50006/2020 and UIDB 00690/2020. L. Grazina is grateful to FCT grant (SFRH/BD/132462/2017) financed by POPH-QREN (subsidised by FSE and MCTES).info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersio

    Food supplements adulteration with undeclared synthetic phosphodiesterase type-5 drugs (PDE-5) inhibitors

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    The use ofplant food supplements (PFS) in developed countries is becoming increasingly popular mostly due to the consumers' widespread idea that natural products are safer and healthier than conventional pharmaceutical drugs [l]. However, in the last years, several studies have been showing the existence of gaps in PFS regulation that can result in insuíficient quality control and intentional adulteration ofthese products [2]. Among the issues that can aíFect PFS safety, the illegal addition of pharmaceutical substances is of major concern, since unscrupulous producers can dope PFS to provide for quick effects. Supplements used for sexual performance improvement are among the most popular PFS used by males. One of the major concerns in this type of product is the possible adulteration with drugs used for the treatment of erectile dysfunction, namely synthetic phosphodiesterase type-5 (PDE-5) inhibitor drugs, such as sildenafil, vardenafil and tadalafil which are approved prescription drugs being marketed as Viagra (Pfizer, USA), Levitra (Bayer Pharmaceuticals Co., Germany) and Cialis (Elli Lilly, USA), respectively. Since these drugs can present side eífects, its illegal addition in PFS can seriously endanger consumers' health. In particular, individuais for whom conventional PDE-5 inhibitor drugs are contraindicated and consequently use food supplements as an alternative maybe at risk ifthe clandestine addition ofthese drugs occurs. In the last years, the presence ofthis type ofdrugs have been detected by FDA in the US, and reported in food supplements commercialized in Ásia, however studies regarding this issue in the EU are almost inexistent. For the presented reasons, an analytical methodology based on the use of high performance liquid chromatography coupled to a fluorescence detector in series with a photodiode array (HPLC-FL-PDA) is proposed for the detection ofPDE-5 inhibitors, namely sildenafil and its analogue acetildenafil, vardenafil and tadalaíil, illegally added to supplements used for aphrodisiac purposes.to FCT (PEst-C/EQB/LA0006/2013 and EXPL/DTP-SAP/1438/2013) and QREN (NORTE-07-0124-FEDER-000069-CIÊNCIA DO ALIMENTO).info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersio
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