Planta Med 2009; 75(3): 286-292
DOI: 10.1055/s-0028-1088394
Analytical Studies
Original Paper
© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Seasonal Phytochemical Variation of Anti-Glycation Principles in Lowbush Blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium)

Kristina L. McIntyre1 , Cory S. Harris1 , 2 , Ammar Saleem1 , Louis-Philippe Beaulieu1 , Chieu Anh Ta1 , Pierre S. Haddad3 , John T. Arnason1
  • 1Centre for Research in Biotechnology and Biopharmaceuticals, Department of Biology University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada
  • 2Neural Regeneration Laboratory and Ottawa Institute of Systems Biology, Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology, and Immunology, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada
  • 3Natural Health Products and Metabolic Diseases Laboratory, Department of Pharmacology, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Canada
Further Information

Publication History

Received: July 14, 2008 Revised: September 15, 2008

Accepted: October 28, 2008

Publication Date:
15 December 2008 (online)


Diabetic hyperglycaemia promotes the production of advanced glycation end-products (AGEs), which play a significant role in the development of complications associated with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Vaccinium angustifolium, a medicinal plant used for the treatment of diabetes, produces a variety of phenolic metabolites with putative anti-diabetic activities. To assess optimal cultivation time, seasonal changes in the concentration of six phenolic compounds in leaves and twelve compounds in stems were examined using HPLC-DAD and examined in relation to seasonal changes in AGE inhibition activity, assessed with a fluorescence-based assay. A seasonal decline occurred in the concentration of chlorogenic acid, rutin, and quercetin 3-arabinoside in leaves and chlorogenic acid in stems. The concentration of (+)-catechin, and (−)-epicatechin in stems declined within two weeks before rising and fluctuating insignificantly. AGE inhibition activity of leaves was significantly greater at the final compared to the initial collection date whereas the activity of stems did not change significantly. Relative to the leaf extract, the stem was a more potent inhibitor of AGE formation, which could be a result of the unique phytochemistry of stems. Together, these results revealed significant seasonal variation in the phenolic profile and anti-glycation effects of V. angustifolium extracts and indicated late summer as the collection time yielding optimal activity.


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John T. Arnason

Centre for Research in Biotechnology and Biopharmaceuticals

Department of Biology

University of Ottawa

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