Identification of polymeric procyanidins from pine bark by mass spectrometry.


Pine bark is an important source of polyphenolic compounds, mainly procyanidins, with reported protective effects against disease. In previous works, barks of two varieties of pine (P. pinaster and P. radiata) were extracted with ethanol, and partially purified to obtain the aqueous fractions (FA), that contained mainly polymeric procyanidins. The mean degree of polymerization was 7.9 for radiata (rFA) and 10.6 for pinaster (pFA). FAs were chromatographed on Sephadex LH-20 by using a gradient of methanol, water and acetone, to render a series of sub-fractions. In this work, the procyanidin compositions of these sub-fractions were analyzed using matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). The mass spectra of sub-fractions from FA of P. pinaster showed signals of procyanidin polymers up to tridecamers, whereas for those from P. radiata the maximum degree of polymerization was 15. For this latter case, the MALDI-TOF mass spectra detected the presence of prodelphinidins in a small amount.


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