To analyze the amino acid contents of some plants used in traditional medicine in Southern
Sonora, Mexico by using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC).
The plant samples (Jutuki, Zizyphus obtusifolia
A.Gray; Jito, Forchammeria watsonii Rose
Barchata, Lycium berlandieri Dunal
; Citabaro, Vallesia glabra
Link; Mangle Rojo, Rhizophora mangle
L and Tatachinole, Tournefortia hartwegiana
Steud) were dehydrated at room temperature and ground to
a fine powder. Amino acid analysis was performed by reversed-phase HPLC. Elution was carried out
with a gradient mobile phase of sodium acetate 0.1 M and methanol (9:1). Samples were derived with ophthalaldehyde
(OPA) and detected by fluorescence at 360(Ex)/455(Em) wavelengths.
HPLC analysis resulted in a reliable detection and peak resolution. Tatachinole samples show
the greater amino acid concentration (7.83 to 58.17 nM). Fifteen amino acids were detected in plant
samples, with aspartic acid (Asp), glutamic acid (Glu), serine (Ser), glycine (Gly), alanine (Ala) and
leucine (Leu) (43.55, 44.84, 29.60, 58.17, 43.05 and 38.73 nM, respectively) presenting the highest
The amino acids - Asp, Glu, Ser, Gly, Ala and Leu - are naturally involved in osmolyte
synthesis, cell metabolism, ammonia detoxification, antioxidant activity and alkaloid synthesis,
suggesting that the therapeutic properties of these Southern Sonora plants may have some links to their
amino acid composition.