Journal of AOAC International

The chemical profile of pyrrolizidine alkaloids from selected greek endemic boraginaceae plants determined by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry.

PMID 25902972


Four Greek endemic Boraginaceae plants, Onosma erecta Sibth. & Sm., Onosma kaheirei Teppner, Onosma leptantha Heldr., and Cynoglossum columnae L. (aerial parts), were screened for their content of pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs). TLC with the Mattocks-Molyneux visualization reagent was used as a preliminary qualitative test for PA or PA N-oxide detection. The extracts of the species found to contain PAs and their N-oxides were further analyzed by GC/MS, so as to identify their structures by means of the mass spectra and retention index values of known PAs already published in the literature. Twenty-three PAs were identified. For additional peaks, recognized as possible PAs by their MS pattern, no exact structures were tentatively suggested, as a result of lack of matching literature data. Furthermore, a quantitative PA profile of the species was obtained.