Antioxidant activity of oregano essential oil (Origanum vulgare L.)

Ljiljana P. Stanojević, Jelena S. Stanojević, Dragan J. Cvetković, Dušica P. Ilić


Essential oil obtained from oregano (Origanum vulgare L.) by Clevenger-type hydrodistillation and hydromodulus 1:10 m/v during 180 minutes, has been investigated in this work. Qualitative and quantitative composition of the oil was determined by GC-MS and GC-FID spectrometry. Antioxidant activity of the obtained oil was examined spectrophotometrically by DPPH test (after 20, 30, 45 and 60 minutes of incubation) and TBA-MDA assay. The yield of essential oil was 4.1 mL/100 g of plant material. Seven components were identified: α-thujene, myrcene, α-terpinene, o-cymene, γ-terpinene, thymol and carvacrol. The major components were thymol (45%) and carvacrol (37.4%). Oil incubated for 60 minutes has shown the best antioxidant activity according to DPPH test. The concentrations of essential oil, required for neutralization of 50% of initial DPPH radical concentration (EC50), were 0.761, 0.590, 0.360 and 0.326 mg/mL, after 20, 30, 45 and 60 minutes of incubation, respectively. Lipid peroxidation inhibition of 92.3% was achieved by 1.35 mg/mL essential oil concentration. The results obtained indicate that oregano essential oil is a good source of natural antioxidants with potential application in food and pharmaceutical industries, as a safer alternative to the synthetic antioxidants.


Origanum vulgare L., essential oil, antioxidant activity, GC-MS analysis

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