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J Agric Food Chem. 2006 Dec 27;54(26):10234-8.

Phenolics of Arbutus unedo L. (Ericaceae) fruits: identification of anthocyanins and gallic acid derivatives.

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  • 1Dipartimento di Chimica Bioorganica e Biofarmacia, Universit√† di Pisa, Via Bonanno 33, 56126 Pisa, Italy.


Arbutus unedo L., the strawberry tree (Ericaceae family), is an evergreen shrub or small tree, typical of the Mediterranean fringe and climate. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the profile of the phenolic constituents of A. unedo fruits. Seven compounds were purified by Sephadex LH-20 column chromatography of the MeOH extract followed by HPLC and were characterized as arbutin, beta-D-glucogalline, gallic acid 4-O-beta-D-glucopyranoside, 3-O-galloylquinic acid, 5-O-galloylquinic acid, 3-O-galloylshikimic acid, and 5-O-galloylshikimic acid, by means of NMR and ESI-MS analyses. Moreover, LC-PDA-MS analysis of the red pigment of A. unedo fruits revealed the presence of three anthocyanins recognized as cyanidin 3-O-beta-D-galactopyranoside, delphinidin 3-O-beta-D-glucopyranoside, and cyanidin 3-O-beta-D-arabinopyranoside. These pigments were also quantified.

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