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Title: Chemical Composition of the Essential Oils from Leaves of Edible (Arachis hypogaea L.) and Perennial (Arachis glabrata Benth.) Peanut Plants

item Dean, Lisa
item CONSTANZA, KAREN - North Carolina State University
item Whaley, Jeffrey
item TALLURY, SHYAMALRAU - North Carolina State University
item Sanders, Timothy

Submitted to: Journal of Essential Oil Bearing Plants
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/29/2014
Publication Date: 7/9/2015
Citation: Dean, L.L., Constanza, K.E., Whaley, J.D., Tallury, S.P., Sanders, T.H. 2015. Chemical Composition of the Essential Oils from Leaves of Edible (Arachis hypogaea L.) and Perennial (Arachis glabrata Benth.) Peanut Plants. Journal of Essential Oil Bearing Plants. 18:(3)605-612.

Interpretive Summary: Peanuts are grown for seeds to be consumed, but the seeds only account for 40% of the total plant material. Forage or perennial peanut plants produce very little seed, but return year after year without replanting. Due to this, they provide a valuable crop for animal feed in areas of the Southern US where the plant thrives. Essential oils are nontriglyceride, small aromatic, organic compounds that are present in plants, most often in the leaves. These compounds serve as insect repellents to protect plants against predators, insect attractants to attract insects for pollination, and make up other larger molecules such as chlorophyll. Due to the presence of hydroxyl moieties on many of these molecules, they can serve as natural antioxidants and this has been seen with plant leaves from certain herbs and spices. This study was conducted to determine the essential oil compounds present in the leaves of these two types of peanut plants. Elucidation of such compounds would open the possibility of future uses of these low value materials as sources of natural antioxidants.

Technical Abstract: Peanuts or groundnuts (Arachis hypogaea L.) are a valuable oilseed crop, but other than the seed, the rest of the plant is of minimal value. Plant material including the leaves is used as mulch or as animal feed. Perennial peanut (Arachis glabrata Benth) known as forage or rhizoma peanut produces few seeds, but is grown specifically as a forage, turf or ornamental plant. The leaves from the peanut plants were freeze dried, essential oils were extracted by distillation and the chemical compositions were determined using gas chromatography and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Oil yield from the A. hypogaea leaves was 0.63%. The major components were aldehydes, phenols, linalool and phytol. The yield from A. glabrata leaves was 0.61% with the major components being linalool, alkanes, and fatty acids.