Chemical profiling of Philippine Moringa oleifera leaves

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Chemical profiling can be applied to medicinal plant raw materials and commercial products to verify identity and to monitor quality. In this paper, we describe the chemical profiles of the volatile oil and methanol extract of Moringa oleifera plant samples collected from various regions of the Philippines. The volatile oil was collected by hydro-distillation and analysed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GCMS). A total of 71 compounds were identified from all of the samples; however, the profile of compounds was very variable. Leaves and stalks produced different volatile profiles: benzyl aldehyde was present in all leaves, but was not detected in any of the stalks. The volatile oil from the stalks did not contain any terpenes. The methanol extract was defatted using hexane and analysed by thin layer chromatography (TLC) and 13C nuclear magnetic resonance (13C NMR) spectroscopy. Quantitative TLC analysis was performed using afzelin and kaempferol as marker compounds. Afzelin was measured in the range 0.02-0.66%, but kaempferol was not detected in any of the samples. No trend was found for afzelin concentration. PCA analysis of the 13C NMR chemical profile indicates that Philippine moringa is highly variable.