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Title: Nutritional characterization and antioxidant capacity of different tissues of Artemisia Annua L.

item UMOREN, U
item Ferreira, Jorge
item Luthria, Devanand - Dave
item WU, X
item PRIOR, R

Submitted to: Food Chemistry
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/1/2009
Publication Date: 4/1/2009
Citation: Brisibe, E.A., Umoren, U.E., Brisibe, F., Magalhaes, P.M., Ferreira, J.F., Luthria, D.L., Wu, X., Prior, R. 2009. Nutritional characterization and antioxidant capacity of different tissues of Artemisia Annua L. Food Chemistry. 115:1240-1246.

Interpretive Summary: Although Sweet wormwood is known and widely used to treat multi—drug resistant malaria, its effects against other parasitic diseases from animals and humans is only currently being discovered. Also, there are no published reports of its nutritional and antioxidant benefits for humans or animals. This work describes the nutritional and antioxidant capacity of different tissues of Sweet wormwood and their potential use as an animal feed supplement. The leaves and inflorescences, more prone to be consumed by grazing animals, were particularly rich in protein, crude fat, manganese, copper, amino acids, and antioxidants. The nutritional and antioxidant composition of Sweet wormwood, coupled with its low content of anti-nutritional components, indicates that the plant is a potential candidate to improve the quality of animal feed wherever the plant can be cultivated.

Technical Abstract: Evaluation of different tissues of A. annua for their nutritional contents and antioxidant potential demonstrated that the leaves and inflorescence had the highest percentage of protein, crude fat and in vitro digestible fractions but the lowest levels of detergent fibers. These tissues also had the highest composition of the major elements as well as manganese and copper. Their relatively high amino acid and vitamin profiles indicate a desirable nutritional balance adding to the high antioxidant capacities of leaves and inflorescences. Collectively, these high levels of the different nutritional constituents and antioxidant activity coupled with the negligible levels of inherent anti-nutritive factors, specially in leaves, establishes A. annua as a good reservoir of nutrients and antioxidants that might favour its use as a potential herbal tonic by humans or as an important supplementary feed additive for livestock production systems.