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Effect of Environmental Factors on Phenolic Compounds in Leaves of Syzygium jambos (L.) Alston (Myrtaceae)

Wilma P Rezende, Leonardo L Borges, Danillo L Santos, Nilda M Alves and José R Paula

Background: Syzygium jambos (L.) Alston, Myrtaceae, is a plant widely used for the treatment of toothache, mouth scores, cough, wound dressing and infectious diseases. Among the metabolite groups identified in leaves of S. jambos are the polyphenols, highlighting tannins and flavonoids, related to the pharmacological properties of this plant. Studies on the influence of environmental factors over production of secondary metabolites in S. jambos are important because they contribute with knowledge for its cultivation and harvest, besides establish quantitative parameters of secondary metabolites in the plant drug. The aim of this paper was to evaluate the effects of environmental factors on levels of phenolic compounds in S. jambos leaves.

Materials and Methods: Total phenols, tannins, flavonoids and mineral nutrients were quantified in leaves, while soil fertility was also analyzed in two different sites and in two months (January and July) from ten specimens (five from each locality).

Results: The data were statistically analyzed and the results have shown that the levels of phenolic compounds in S. jambos leaves were influenced by environmental factors, particularly some foliar nutrients (Pl, Kl Cal, Nal, Fel, Col and Mol), soil nutrients (Als, Ks, Ss, Nas and Mns) and climatic factors (temperature and rainfall).

Conclusion: The results obtained in this work will be useful for knowledge of the best conditions for leaves collection from S. jambos, besides the data analyzed suggested that environmental factors can affect the levels of tannins in this species.