Saba senegalensis fruits have gained more attention in recent years due to their antioxidant compounds such as carotenoids, phenolics, vitamin C. This study was designed to identify the main carotenoids from S. senegalensis fruits including phenolics and vitamin C quantifications. Carotenoid profiles from tissues of these fruits have been characterized by High Performance Thin Layer Chromatography- mass spectrometry (HPTLC-MS) for the first time. Phenolics and vitamin C contents were studied using spectrophotometric and high-performance liquid chromatography-diode-array detector (HPLC-DAD) methods, respectively. Using the Folin-Ciocalteu’s reagent, total phenolics content was estimated to be around 630 mg gallic acid equivalents/100 g fresh fruit of S. senegalensis. The HPLC analysis showed vitamin C content of about 1511 µg/100 g fresh weight. Three xanthophylls (antheraxanthin, lutein, and β-cryptoxanthin), and two hydrocarbon carotenes (β-carotene and phytoene) were identified in the saponified extract of fruits. For radical-scavenging activity, using 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) method, S. senegalensis fruits extract was estimated to be 75 mg of Trolox equivalents/100 g fresh weight for whole fruit. Results obtained indicate that S. senegalensis fruits are a cheap source of carotenoids and other micronutrients. They are important for industrials and as an ingredient used in functional food formulation.
Key words: Carotene, β-carotene, pigment, antioxidants, fruit extract, functional food.
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