Fabio Galeotti, Francesca Maccari, Alfredo Fachini and Nicola Volpi
Different products from a unique propolis extract obtained by using various solvents such as hydroalcoholic, glycolic (98% propylene glycol), and glyceric solutions, and oil, as well as in powder form, named ESIT12, were prepared. The molecular composition of the different preparations was evaluated and their antioxidant activity determined. All the preparations showed a quite similar polyphenol composition and comparable percentage even if ESIT12 was found to be richer in phenolic acids (caffeic, coumaric, ferulic, and isoferulic). Overall, flavones and flavonols ranged from ~20% up to ~36% in the glyceric extract, while flavanones and diidroflavonols were between ~28% and ~41%. Besides their quite similar composition, glycolic and hydroalcoholic extracts were found to be richer in the total polyphenols content. When the antioxidant properties were determined for the four preparations, the activity was similar among them, thus revealing that it is strictly related to the polyphenols content for propolis products whose composition is quite comparable. To date, very few data are available on propolis composition in glyceric and glycolic extracts and information has never been published on propolis in oil. This study could be of interest to the food and nutraceutical industries to choose suitable solvents and conditions to produce propolis preparations useful for active finished products.