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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Chromatographic fingerprint analysis of Pycnogenol® dietary supplements

Authors
item Chen, Pei
item Song, Fenhong
item Lin, Longze

Submitted to: Journal of the Association of Official Analytical Chemists
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: December 8, 2008
Publication Date: March 1, 2009
Citation: Chen, P., Song, F., Lin, L. 2009. Chromatographic fingerprint analysis of Pycnogenol® dietary supplements. Journal of AOAC International. 92(2):624-632.

Interpretive Summary: French maritime (Pinus maritima) bark has been widely used as an herbal remedy for various degenerative diseases. A standardized bark extract that complies with its USP monograph is derived from of Pinus pinaster, Ait. (Pycnogenol®, Horphag Research Ltd., UK). The method specified in the USP monograph is the standard HPLC procedure for Pycnogenol analysis. It analyzes four components of the extract: caffeic acid, catachin, ferulic acid, and taxifolin. In this study, a HPLC/UV fingerprint analysis using the standard USP HPLC profile has been developed to provide additional qualitative information for the analysis of Pycnogenol-containing dietary supplements. This method will be useful to scientists interested in verifying the content of supplements containing Pycnogenol.

Technical Abstract: French maritime bark (Pinus maritima) has been widely used as an herbal remedy for various degenerative diseases. A standardized bark extract is available that complies with its USP monograph and is derived from Pinus pinaster, Ait. (Pycnogenol®, Horphag Research Ltd., UK). The method specified in the USP monograph is a standard HPLC procedure for Pycnogenol analysis. The USP method quantifies four components of the extract: caffeic acid, catachin, ferulic acid, and taxifolin. In this study, a HPLC/UV fingerprint analysis using a modified USP HPLC method has been developed to provide additional qualitative information for the analysis of Pycnogenol-containing dietary supplements. The LC/UV method used is similar to the standard USP method except 0.1% formic acid was used instead of phosphoric acid and acetonitrile was used instead of methanol. Twelve commercially available Pycnogenol®-containing dietary supplement samples were purchased and analyzed along with the standard Pycnogenol extract. Their chromatographic fingerprints were analyzed using principal component analysis. The results showed two of the samples were not consistent with the standard Pycnogenol® extract. One supplement contained other ingredients which were confirmed as present on the ingredient label listing of the supplement, and the other may have resulted from quality control issues in manufacturing.

Last Modified: 4/20/2014