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J Agric Food Chem. 2011 Aug 24;59(16):8754-60. doi: 10.1021/jf2015733. Epub 2011 Aug 3.

Comparison of the chemical constituents of aged pu-erh tea, ripened pu-erh tea, and other teas using HPLC-DAD-ESI-MSn.

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State Key Laboratory of Natural and Biomimetic Drugs, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing, China.


Pu-erh tea is a popular beverage in southwestern China and South Asian countries. To explain the differences of aged pu-erh tea and ripened pu-erh tea, the chemical constituents of these teas were identified by HPLC-DAD-ESI-MS(n). In addition, HPLC was used to determine the contents of the major polyphenols, gallic acid, caffeine, and theobromine, in various types of teas. These results showed that the majority of chemical constituents in ripened pu-erh tea and aged pu-erh tea were similar, but the contents of catechins and gallic acid presented significant differences between these two teas. After fermentation by microorganism, the levels of catechins in ripened pu-erh tea were decreased, but the contents of gallic acid and caffeine were conversely elevated compared with aged pu-erh tea.

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