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Antioxidants (Basel). 2019 Nov 15;8(11). pii: E559. doi: 10.3390/antiox8110559.

From the Field to the Pot: Phytochemical and Functional Analyses of Calendula officinalis L. Flower for Incorporation in an Organic Yogurt.

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Food Science and Technology Graduate Program, State University of Ponta Grossa, Ponta Grossa 84030-900, Paraná, Brazil.
Department of Food Engineering, State University of Ponta Grossa, Ponta Grossa 84030-900, Paraná, Brazil.
Department of Chemistry, State University of Ponta Grossa, Ponta Grossa 84030-900, Paraná, Brazil.
Department of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Alfenas, Alfenas 37130-000, Minas Gerais, Brazil.
Department of Food Science, Faculty of Food Engineering, University of Campinas, Campinas 13083-862, São Paulo, Brazil.
State Key Laboratory of Tea Plant Biology and Utilization, Anhui Agricultural University, Hefei 230036, China.
Food Processing and Quality, Innovative Food System, Production Systems Unit-Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke)-Tietotie 2, FI-02150 Espoo, Finland.


Edible flowers have been used as ingredients because of their biological activities, taste, and overall appearance. This research was aimed to characterize the chemical composition and in vitro antioxidant activity of the marigold flower (Calendula officinalis L.) extracted with different proportions of water and ethyl alcohol, and the lyophilized extract with higher content of antioxidant compounds was incorporated into an organic yogurt. Results showed that the hydroalcoholic extract (50:50 v/v) presented the highest total phenolic content (TPC), flavonoids, and antioxidant activity (ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP), total reducing capacity (TRC), and Cu2+/Fe2+ chelating ability). Phenolic acids and flavonoids were quantified in the extract by LC-DAD, while 19 compounds were tentatively identified by ESI-MS/MS. The lyophilized marigold extract (LME) also inhibited 12% of Wistar rat's brain lipid oxidation in vitro, inhibited α-amylase, and α-glucosidase activities, but showed no cytotoxicity towards cancerous cells (HCT8 and A549). However, marigold flower extract protected human erythrocytes against mechanical stress. When added into an organic yogurt model (0 to 1.5%), LME increased TPC and antioxidant activity (2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) and TRC), and the sensory analysis showed that the organic yogurt had an acceptance of 80.4%. Our results show that the use of LME may be a technological strategy to increase the content of bioactive compounds in yogurts.


antihemolytic effect; antiproliferative activity; edible flowers; free radicals; functional foods; natural products

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