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Valtcho D. Zheljazkov, Santosh Shiwakoti, Tess Astatkie, Ivan Salamon, Daniela Grul'ová, Silvia Mudrencekova, and Vicki Schlegel

Cumin (Cuminum cyminum L.) is an important essential oil (EO), medicinal, and spice plant from family Apiaceae. Cumin seed EO has wide applications in the food, liquor, pharmaceutical, and aromatherapy industries, and is extracted via steam or hydrodistillation of either whole or ground seed. The hypothesis of this study was that by capturing oil eluted at different timeframes during the hydrodistillation process (HDP), we could obtain oils of differential composition and bioactivity. The objective was to evaluate the EO fractions captured at different timeframes of the HDP. In this study, we collected nine different EO fractions following nine hydrodistillation time (HDT) frames: 0–2, 2–7, 7–15, 15–30, 30–45, 45–75, 75–105, 105–135, and 135–165 minutes. In addition, continuous HDT of 165 minutes was conducted as a control and the complete cumin seed oil was collected at the end of this time. HDT significantly affected the concentrations of the following constituents in the oil (as percentage of total oil): α-pinene (0.2% to 2.1%), β-pinene (5% to 35.8%), mycrene (0.3% to 1.7%), para-cymene (12.0% to 26.4%), γ-terpinene (4.8% to 25.9%), cumin aldehyde (3.8% to 51.1%), α-terpinen-7-al (0.2% to 11.2%), and γ-terpinen-7-al (1.3% to 13.1%). Some of the constituents were eluted early in the HDP and were highest in the oil fraction collected at the beginning of the HDP, others were highest in the fractions collected midway in the HDP, and another group of constituents were eluted later and were the highest in the oil fractions collected during the last HDT (135–165 minutes). Due to their altered chemical composition, the oil fractions expressed different antioxidant capacities; the one eluted at 105–135 minutes HDT had the greatest oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) values. The ORAC values were positively correlated to the concentration of cumin aldehyde (0.962), α-terpinene (0.889) and γ-terpinene (0.717), which suggest that these compounds in cumin oil may be responsible for the measured antioxidant capacity. This study demonstrated that cumin oil with dissimilar chemical profile and antioxidant activity could be obtained from the same batch of seed by capturing oils at different timeframes during the same HDP. The resulting products (EO fractions) could have diverse industrial, medical, and environmental applications. The method for cumin seed grinding and EO extraction described in this study could be used by industry to reduce energy inputs and oil losses, and for fast oil extraction.

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Valtcho D. Zheljazkov, Tess Astatkie, Santosh Shiwakoti, Shital Poudyal, Thomas Horgan, Natasha Kovatcheva, and Anna Dobreva

Garden sage (Salvia officinalis L.) is a medicinal, culinary, ornamental, and essential oil plant with a wide range of ecological adaptation. Garden sage essential oil traditionally is extracted by steam distillation from the above-ground biomass and has widespread applications as an aromatic agent in the food and pharmaceutical industries as well as in perfumery and cosmetics. The hypothesis of this study was that the steam distillation time (DT) may significantly affect essential oil yield and composition of garden sage and, therefore, DT could be used as a tool to obtain oil with different composition. Therefore, the objective was to evaluate the effect of various steam DTs (1.25, 2.5, 5, 10, 20, 40, 80, and 160 minutes) on garden sage oil yield and composition. Most of the oil in the garden sage dry herbage was extracted in 10-minute DT; extending DT up to 160 minutes did not significantly increase oil yields. Overall, 39 oil constituents were identified in the garden sage essential oil. Fourteen oil constituents with the highest concentration in the oil were selected for statistical analyses. Monoterpenes represented the major percentage (58.2% to 84.1%) of oil composition followed by sesquiterpenes (4.0% to 16.1%) and diterpenes (0.3% to 7.6%). Overall, the monoterpene hydrocarbons (α-pinene, camphene, β-pinene, myrcene, and limonene) were eluted early in the steam distillation process, which resulted in their high concentration in the oil at 5- to 10-minute DT and relatively low concentrations in the oil obtained at 160-minute DT. In general, the concentration of sesquiterpenes (β-caryophyllene, α-humulene, and verdifloral) increased with increasing duration of the DT and reached their respective maximum concentrations in the oil at 160-minute DT. The relative concentrations of major constituents, camphor and cis-thujone, in the oil obtained at 2.5-minute DT were higher than in the oils obtained at longer DT. Therefore, if oil with high concentrations of camphor and cis-thujone is desirable, garden sage dried biomass ought to be steam distilled for 2.5 to 5 minutes and the oil collected. If oil with a high concentration of monoterpene hydrocarbons and a high concentration of oxygenated monoterpenes is desirable, then garden sage should be distilled for 20 minutes. If oil with a high concentration of the diterpene manool is desirable, then garden sage should be steam-distilled for 80 minutes. If oil with a high concentration of sesquiterpenes is desirable, then garden sage should be steam-distilled for 160 minutes. The duration of steam distillation can be used as an economical method to obtain garden sage oil with a different chemical composition. The regression models developed in this study can be used to predict garden sage oil yield and composition distilled for various amounts of time and to compare literature reports in which different durations of DT were used.

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Santosh Shiwakoti, Henry Y. Sintim, Shital Poudyal, Jennifer Bufalo, Charles L. Cantrell, Tess Astatkie, Ekaterina Jeliazkova, Lyn Ciampa, and Valtcho D. Zheljazkov

Japanese cornmint, also known as menthol mint (Mentha canadensis L. syn M. arvensis L.), is an essential oil crop cultivated in several countries in Asia and South America. The plant is currently the only commercially viable source for natural menthol as a result of the high concentration of menthol in the oil compared with other crops. The hypothesis of this study was that harvesting at regular intervals within a 24-hour period would have an effect on essential oil concentration and composition of Japanese cornmint grown at high altitude in northern Wyoming. Flowering plants were harvested every 2 hours on 7 to 8 Aug. and on 14 to 15 Aug. and the essential oil was extracted by steam distillation and analyzed by gas chromatography–mass spectroscopy (GC-MS). The effects of harvest date (Harvest 1 and Harvest 2) and harvest time (12 times within a 24-hour period) were significant on oil concentration and yield of menthol, but only harvest date was significant on the concentration of menthol in the oil. The interaction effect of harvest date and harvest time was significant on water content and on the concentrations of menthol and menthofuran in the oil and on the yield of limonene, menthol, and menthofuran. Overall, the oil concentration in grams per 100 g dried material for the two harvests (1.26 and 1.45, respectively), the concentration of menthol in the oil (67.2% and 72.9%, respectively), and menthol yield (1066 to 849 mg/100 g dried biomass) were higher in plants at Harvest 2 as compared with plants at Harvest 1. The oil concentration was higher in plants harvested at 1100 hr or at 1300 hr and lowest in the plants harvested at 1500 hr. Menthol yield was the highest in plants harvested at 1300 hr and lowest in the plants harvested at 0700 hr, 1900 hr, or at 0300 hr. This study demonstrated that harvesting time within a 24-hour period and harvest date (maturity of the crop) may affect essential oil concentration and composition of Japanese cornmint grown at high altitude in northern Wyoming.