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Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2009 Aug;60(5):395-401. doi: 10.1080/09637480701755262.

Antioxidant capacity of the striped sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) seed extracts evaluated by three in vitro methods.

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Department of Basic and Experimental Nutrition, Institute of Nutrition, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil.


The antioxidant capacity of the striped sunflower seed cotyledon extracts, obtained by sequential extraction with different polarities of solvents, was evaluated by three different in vitro methods: ferric reducing/antioxidant power (FRAP), 2.2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl radical (DPPH) and oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) assays. In the three methods, the aqueous extract at 30 µg/ml showed a higher antioxidant capacity value (FRAP, 45.27 µmol; DPPH, 50.18%; ORAC, 1.5 Trolox equivalents) than the ethanolic extract (FRAP, 32.17 µmol; DPPH, 15.21%;ORAC, 0.50 Trolox equivalents). When compared with the synthetic antioxidant butylated hydroxyl toluene, the antioxidant capacity of the aqueous extract varied from 45% to 66%, according to the used method. The high antioxidant capacity observed for the aqueous extract of the studied sunflower seed suggests that the intake of this seed may prevent in vivo oxidative reactions responsible for the development of several diseases, such as cancer.

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