Extraction and analitical methods of plants secondary metabolites

Subject description

The classification of secondary metabolites will be presented with an emphasis on phenols and carotenoids as well as information on their properties (solubility in various solvents, stability at different temperatures, pH levels, and light). All these factors are important for extraction and further analysis. The role of individual groups of secondary metabolites and their ecological function (attractants, repellents, alelopathic compounds, protection against environmental factors …) will be discussed. The content of secondary metabolites will be practically determined in different plant organs such as fruits, leaves, flowers and the changes during the growing season compared with their activity. The major synthesis paths of secondary metabolites will be reviewed and the influence of technological measures or environmental factors on the levels of secondary metabolites explained. Selected extraction methods will be presented for major groups of secondary metabolites and analytical procedures performed on different machines such as spectrophotometers, HPLC, MS, etc. The activity of certain key enzymes of synthesis paths will be determined. The importance of secondary metabolites for the quality of food of plant origin will be discussed.

The subject is taught in programs

Objectives and competences

The aim of the course is advanced knowledge on plant’s secondary metabolites, their properties, extraction and analytical methods.

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures, seminar work.

Expected study results

Knowledge and understanding:

Students understand the characteristics of specific groups of secondary metabolites and are able to choose the correct extraction method, apply modifications or perform new ones appropriate for plant tissue and group of secondary metabolites.  

Basic sources and literature

Michael W. 2010. Biochemistry of Plant Secondary Metabolism (Annual Plant Reviews S.). Sheffield Academic Press, 464 str. ISBN 978-1405183970


Revijalni članki s področja, tekoča periodika, druga učna gradiva…


Articles from scientific journals, current magazines, other readings …

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