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Chemometric analysis of active compounds and antioxidant and α-glucosidase inhibitory activities for the quality evaluation of licorice from different origins
Biomedical Chromatography  (IF1.902),  Pub Date : 2021-07-16, DOI: 10.1002/bmc.5215
Xuemei Zhang, Xinhua Guo, Ping Zhao, Xuemin Zhang, Wenyuan Gao, Xia Li

Contents of total flavonoids (TFc), total phenolics (TPc), and total crude polysaccharide (TCPc) in licorice from different origins were determined by optimized colorimetric methods, whereas five monomer ingredients (liquiritin [LQ], isoliquiritin [ILQ], liquiritigenin [LQG], isoliquiritigenin [ILQG], and glycyrrhizic acid [GA]) were simultaneously identified and quantified by HPLC–MS and HPLC. The results indicated that the contents of chemical compounds in licorice showed significant difference in different origins. Hierarchical cluster analysis and principal component analysis further proved that producing area indeed affected the quality including compounds and pharmacological activity in licorice. Licorice from Inner Mongolia exhibited the excellent DPPH assay, whereas samples from Gansu and Xinjiang showed high scavenging capacity to OH and ABTS free radicals. Meanwhile, α-Glu inhibitory activity of licorice samples was four times higher than the antioxidant activity. Correlation analysis made clear that TFc and TCPc both strongly contribute to DPPH scavenge capacity at P < 0.01 level, whereas TCPc contributed to α-Glu inhibitory activity at P < 0.05 level. This study would contribute to the comprehensive quality evaluation based on the compounds and pharmacological activity of licorice, and provide a reference for the choice of producing area to ensure the quality of licorice as a medicine.