Determination of St. John's wort components in dietary supplements and functional foods by liquid chromatography
Ang CY, Cui Y, Chang HC, Luo W,
Heinze TM, Lin LJ, Mattia A.
U.S. Food and Drug Administration,
National Center for Toxicological Research,
Division of Chemistry, Jefferson,
AR 72079, USA.
J AOAC Int. 2002 Nov-Dec;85(6):1360-9


St. John's wort (Hypericum perforatum L.) preparations, a top-selling botanical dietary supplement used primarily as an antidepressant, has recently been used as an ingredient in some food products sold as functional foods. A rapid extraction technique followed by a liquid chromatographic (LC) method was developed to determine 4 characteristic bioactive compounds (pseudohypericin, hypericin, hyperforin, and adhyperforin) from St. John's wort in dietary supplements and functional foods to which it was added. Solid samples, including dried leaf/flower mixture, dietary supplement capsules, tea bags, puff and snack bar, were extracted with methanol by sonication. Noncarbonated, fruit-flavored drinks were centrifuged and mixed with methanol. Compounds were then determined by isocratic, reversed-phase LC with UV detection at 2 wavelengths and further identified or confirmed by photodiode array spectra and LC/mass spectrometry. Within-laboratory method variations (% RSD) were satisfactory. Very low amounts, if any, of the 4 components were found in drink and puff samples, and none was found in the snack bar. The methods developed provide a useful means for the determination of St. John's wort components in dietary supplements and functional foods.
Iron deficiency
Calcium and mood
Vitamins and mood
Docosahexaenoic acid
Catecholamine depletion
Bad moods and sick hearts
Ascorbic acid, mood, and sex
Functional foods and the GI tract
St. John's wort as a natural antidepressant

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