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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Validation of the Analysis of Toxic DHPAs and the N-Oxides in Comfrey and Related Plant-derived Products for Human Use

Location: Poisonous Plant Research

Project Number: 2080-32630-012-01
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Oct 01, 2012
End Date: Mar 30, 2014

Objective:
Validate the analytical method for specific toxic DHPAs and their N-oxides in Symphytum officinale (comfrey) and adapt and validate extraction, analytical sample preparation and quantitative analysis methods for toxic DHPAs and their N-oxides in commercially-available Symphytum spp.-related products.

Approach:
The aim of this study is the production of pure, authenticated standards of the individual comfrey Dehydropyrrolizidine Alkaloids (DHPAs). Many kilograms of comfrey root have been extracted and individual alkaloids separated using various chromatographic methods. Current approaches include redox resin-based reduction of DHPA-N-oxides, liquid-liquid enrichment of the parent base DHPAs, normal phase and reverse phase medium pressure flash chromatography and boronated sand/glass beads chromatography to separate S. uplandicum alkaloids. Current work will focus on comparing analytical responses of purified intermedine and lycopsamine with respect to other purified DHPAs.

Last Modified: 11/24/2014
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