Strawberry (cv. Romina) Methanolic Extract and Anthocyanin-Enriched Fraction Improve Lipid Profile and Antioxidant Status in HepG2 Cells
Research on biological activity of anthocyanins requires the availability of high purity materials. However, current methods to isolate anthocyanins or anthocyanin mixtures are tedious and expensive or insufficient for complete isolation. We applied a novel cation-exchange/reversed-phase combination solid-phase extraction (SPE) technique, and optimized the use of water/organic buffer mobile phases to selectively separate anthocyanins. Crude extracts of various representative anthocyanin sources were purified with this technique and compared to 3 commonly used SPE techniques: C(18), HLB, and LH-20. Purified anthocyanin fractions were analyzed with high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) coupled to photodiode array (PDA) and mass spectrometry (MS) detectors and by Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy. The UV-visible chromatograms quantitatively demonstrated that our novel technique achieved significantly higher (P<0.05) anthocyanin purity than the C(18) cartridge, the next best method, for 11 of the 12 anthocyanin sources tested. Among them, eight were purified to greater than 99% purity (based on UV-visible chromatograms). The new method efficiently removed non-anthocyanin phenolics. MS and FT-IR results semi-quantitatively confirmed extensive reduction of impurities. Due to strong ionic interaction, our sorbent capacity was superior to others, resulting in the highest throughput and least use of organic solvents. This new methodology for isolation of anthocyanin mixtures drastically increased purity and efficiency while maintaining excellent recovery rate and low cost. The availability of high purity anthocyanin mixtures will facilitate anthocyanin studies and promote the application of anthocyanins in the food and nutraceutical industries.