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J Pharm Biomed Anal. 2007 Feb 19;43(3):886-92. Epub 2006 Oct 17.

Determination of new retention indices for quick identification of essential oils compounds.

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  • 1Unité d'Analyse Chimique et Physico-chimique des Médicaments, Université Catholique de Louvain, UCL 72.30, Avenue Emmanuel Mounier, 72, B-1200 Bruxelles, Belgium.


The classical methods of chromatographic identification of compounds were based on calculation of retention indices by using different stationary phases. The aim of the work was to differentiate essential oils extracted from different plant species by identification of some of their major compounds. The method of identification was based on the calculation of new retention indices of essential oils compounds fractionated on a polar chromatographic column with temperature programming system. Similar chromatograms have been obtained on the same column for one plant family with two different temperature gradients allowing the rapid identification of essential oils of different species, sub-species or chemotypes of Citrus, Mentha and Thymus.

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