• Determination of bioactive and potentially toxic compounds in food: raw material analysis and shelf life evaluation
  • Verardo, Vito <1977>


  • AGR/15 Scienze e tecnologie alimentari


  • "Bioactive compounds" are extranutritional constituents that typically occur in small quantities in food. They are being intensively studied to evaluate their effects on health. Bioactive compounds include both water soluble compounds, such as phenolics, and lipidic substances such as n-3 fatty acids, tocopherols and sterols. Phenolic compounds, tocopherols and sterols are present in all plants and have been studied extensively in cereals, nuts and oil. n-3 fatty acids are present in fish and all around the vegetable kingdom. The aim of the present work was the determination of bioactive and potentially toxic compounds in cereal based foods and nuts. The first section of this study was focused on the determination of bioactive compounds in cereals. Because of that the different forms of phytosterols were investigated in hexaploid and tetraploid wheats. Hexaploid cultivars were the best source of esterified sterols (40.7% and 37.3% of total sterols for Triticum aestivum and Triticum spelta, respectively). Significant amounts of free sterols (65.5% and 60.7% of total sterols for Triticum durum and Triticum dicoccon, respectively) were found in the tetraploid cultivars. Then, free and bound phenolic compounds were identified in barley flours. HPLCESI/ MSD analysis in negative and positive ion mode established that barley free flavan-3- ols and proanthocyanidins were four dimers and four trimers having (epi)catechin and/or (epi)gallocatechin (C and/or GC) subunits. Hydroxycinnamic acids and their derivatives were the main bound phenols in barley flours. The results obtained demonstrated that barley flours were rich in phenolic compounds that showed high antioxidant activity. The study also examined the relationships between phenolic compounds and lipid oxidation of bakery. To this purpose, the investigated barley flours were used in the bakery production. The formulated oven products presented an interesting content of phenolic compounds, but they were not able to contain the lipid oxidation. Furthermore, the influence of conventional packaging on lipid oxidation of pasta was evaluated in n-3 enriched spaghetti and egg spaghetti. The results proved that conventional packaging was not appropriated to preserve pasta from lipid oxidation; in fact, pasta that was exposed to light showed a high content of potentially toxic compounds derived from lipid oxidation (such as peroxide, oxidized fatty acids and COPs). In the second section, the content of sterols, phenolic compounds, n-3 fatty acids and tocopherols in walnuts were reported. Rapid analytical techniques were used to analyze the lipid fraction and to characterize phenolic compounds in walnuts. Total lipid chromatogram was used for the simultaneous determination of the profile of sterols and tocopherols. Linoleic and linolenic acids were the most representative n-6 and n-3 essential dietary fatty acids present in these nuts. Walnuts contained substantial amounts of γ- and δ-tocopherol, which explained their antioxidant properties. Sitosterol, Δ5-avenasterol and campesterol were the major free sterols found. Capillary electrophoresis coupled to DAD and microTOF was utilized to determine phenolic content of walnut. A new compound in walnut ((2E,4E)- 8-hydroxy-2,7-dimethyl-2,4-decadiene-1,10-dioic acid 6-O-β-D-glucopiranosyl ester, [M−H]− 403.161m/z) with a structure similar to glansreginins was also identified. Phenolic compounds corresponded to 14–28% of total polar compounds quantified. Aglycone and glycosylated ellagic acid represented the principal components and account for 64–75% of total phenols in walnuts. However, the sum of glansreginins A, B and ((2E,4E)-8-hydroxy- 2,7-dimethyl-2,4-decadiene-1,10-dioic acid 6-O-β-D-glucopiranosyl ester was in the range of 72–86% of total quantified compounds.


  • 2009-06-05


  • Doctoral Thesis
  • PeerReviewed


  • application/pdf



Verardo, Vito (2009) Determination of bioactive and potentially toxic compounds in food: raw material analysis and shelf life evaluation, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Scienze degli alimenti , 21 Ciclo.