Phytochemical characterization and the determination of antioxidant activities of Asparagus nelsii root extracts

Simeon Ambuga

Medicinal plants produce important secondary metabolites such as flavonoids, tannins, saponins, alkaloids and many other compounds. These compounds are considered to be the chief plant constituent, because of their important role as antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidants agents. The aim of this study was to determine and characterize the phytochemicals present in water and methanol extracts of the roots of Asparagus nelsii, and conduct antioxidant tests of the extracts. Roots of A. nelsii were collected from Othika village in the Omusati Region and crude extracts were obtained with solvent extraction by reflux for 3 hours. Different screening methods from literature were employed to detect the phytochemicals present in the extracts. Characterization of the compounds was done using GCMS and the data was compared to the NIST library database for compound identification. Antioxidant test was conducted using the hydrogen peroxide scavenging essay with different concentrations of crude extracts. The phytochemicals present in the root extracts were determined to be flavonoids, saponins, tannins and phenolic compounds. One of the compounds that were successfully identified from the database by comparison of MS spectral data was Phenol-2methoxy-4-(1-propenyl). The water extract exhibited the highest antioxidant potential at a concentration of 110 μg/ml, and also exhibited higher higher antioxidant capacity compared to methanol extract. The results of this study show that the water and methanol extracts of A. nelsii can be used as accessible source of natural antioxidants.

Published Date: 2020-09-16;