Planta Med 2010; 76 - P226
DOI: 10.1055/s-0030-1264524

Essential oil of Centaurea pannonica (Heufel) Simonkai and antioxidant activity of the methanol extract

T Miloevic 1, C Argyropoulou 2, V Mihailovic 1, M Stankovic 1, S Solujic 1, H Skaltsa 2
  • 1Faculty of Science, University of Kragujevac, Department of Chemistry, Radoja Domanovica 12, 34000 Kragujevac, Serbia, Republic of
  • 2School of Pharmacy, University of Athens, Department of Pharmacognosy, Panepistimiopolis, Zografou, 157 71 Athens, Greece

During the last few decades, an intensive search of the safety of synthetic food additives has been carried out and many of them have been found to possess toxic activity [1]. Therefore the general trend is to replace them in food processing by natural antioxidants. Essential oils or plant extracts are proposed as alternative sources for the preservation of food [2]. Centaurea pannonica, is an erect perennial growing wild plant belonging to the Asteraceae family. Its essential oil was isolated from air-dried aerial parts by hydrodistillation and analyzed by GC and GC/MS [3]. Forty five compounds were identified, representing 82.2% of total oil, with 9-octadecanoic acid (34.0%), caryophyllene oxide (8.0%) and spathulenol (6.0%) being the main compounds. The methanol extract of C. pannonica was investigated for its antioxidant potential by using five different assays, including: total antioxidant capacity, free radical scavenging (DPPH), inhibitory activity toward lipid peroxidation, Fe3+-reducing power and Fe2+-chelating ability. The content of total phenolics in the methanol extract was determined according to the Folin-Ciocalteu procedure [4] and calculated as 105.96mg±9.22 GA/g dry extract. Moreover a spectrometric method with aluminum chloride [5] was used for the determination of total flavonoids, which was estimated to be 111.36±10.03mg rutin (RU)/g dry extract. The results show a significant antioxidant activity of the investigated extract compared to standard antioxidant compounds, such as butylated hydrohytoluene (BHT), gallic acid (GA), ascorbic acid (AA) and α-tocopherol.

Table 1: Antioxidant activity of C. pannonica methanol extract

Total antioxidant capacity (mg AA/g dry extract)

IC50 (µg/ml)

DPPH scavenging activity

Inhibitory activity toward lipid peroxidation

Metal chelating activity

C. pannonica




(1.62±0.09) x 103













6.05±0. 25








Acknowledgements: Greek foundation of Scholarships (IKY) and Ministry of Science, Republic of Serbia (project No. 142025).

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2. Pokorný, J. (1991) Trends Food Sci. Tech. 2:223–227.

3. Lazari, D. et. al. (2000) Flavour Fragr. J. 15:7–11.

4. Pharmacopoeia Jugoslavica 4th ed. (1984) National Institute for Health Protection: Belgrade.

5. Brighente, I.M.C. (2007) Pharm. Biol. 45: 156–161.