Comparison of the chemical composition and biological activity of mature and immature honey: an HPLC/QTOF/MS-based metabolomic approach

Nana Guo, Liuwei Zhao, Yazhou Zhao, Qiangqiang Li, Xiaofeng Xue, Liming Wu, Margarita Gomez Escalada, Kai Wang, Wenjun Peng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Harvesting uncapped immature honey (IMH) followed by dehydration is a typical counterfeit honey production process, but the differences between IMH and capped mature honey (MH) have not been well described previously. In this study, MH and IMH from Apis mellifera colonies during the same rapeseed flower season were compared. MH was found to have lower water content, lower acidity, and higher fructose content. High-performance liquid chromatography combined with quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry-based untargeted metabolomic analysis indicated that MH had a distinct metabolite composition to IMH. Targeted metabolomic analysis on 20 major polyphenolic constituents showed higher accumulation in MH. MH had greater bacteriostatic effect and stronger free radical scavenging effect. While both the honeys mitigated cell damage caused by H2O2, the effective dosage of IMH was higher and its inducing effect on the antioxidant gene expression was weaker. Overall, MH was shown to be of better quality than IMH not only because of its richer polyphenolic composition but also because of its stronger biological activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4062-4071
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
Volume68
Issue number13
Early online date18 Mar 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • bioactivity
  • honey
  • HPLC-Q-TOF/MS
  • immature
  • mature
  • metabolomic analysis

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