Bioactive compounds and antioxidant properties of black elderberry (Sambucus nigra L.)

Renata Nurzyńska-Wierdak

University of Life Science in Lublin, Poland

Agnieszka Najda

University of Life Science in Lublin, Poland

Andrzej Sałata

University of Life Science in Lublin, Poland

Anna Krajewska

University of Life Science in Lublin, Poland


Abstract. Elderberry (Sambucus nigra L.) raw materials are a rich and valuable source of bioactive substances and popular herbal medicine. The research aimed to determine the content of polyphenolic compounds and pigments in leaves, flowers, and wild elderberry fruits and evaluate the antioxidant activity. The raw material was collected in various stages of development, dried in natural conditions and at a temperature of 45/60°C. The presence of polyphenolic compounds was demonstrated: phenolic acids, flavonoids, anthocyanins, and chlorophyll and carotenoids in all tested raw materials. The elderberry flower turned out to be the richest source of total polyphenols (10.04%) and phenolic acids (2.90%), leaf – flavonoids (1.48%), chlorophylls and carotenoids (931.7 and 133.77 mg . 100 g-1 DM, respectively), and the fruit – anthocyanins (0.29 g . 100 g-1 DM). Elderberry extracts were characterised by high antioxidant activity: Sambuci flos > Sambuci fructus > Sambuci folium. Fully ripe elderberry fruit dried at a temperature of 60°C contained finally less moisture and more flavonoids and chlorophyll than harvested at the beginning of ripening.


medicinal plant, plant development phase, drying conditions, polyphenols, chlorophyll, carotenoids.

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Renata Nurzyńska-Wierdak 
University of Life Science in Lublin, Poland
Agnieszka Najda 
University of Life Science in Lublin, Poland
Andrzej Sałata 
University of Life Science in Lublin, Poland
Anna Krajewska 
University of Life Science in Lublin, Poland



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