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International Journal of Analytical Chemistry
Volume 2013, Article ID 802573, 6 pages
Research Article

Isolation and Partial Characterization of Bioactive Fucoxanthin from Himanthalia elongata Brown Seaweed: A TLC-Based Approach

School of Food Science and Environmental Health, College of Sciences and Health, Dublin Institute of Technology, Cathal Brugha Street, Dublin 1, Ireland

Received 28 February 2013; Revised 18 April 2013; Accepted 18 April 2013

Academic Editor: Hian Kee Lee

Copyright © 2013 Gaurav Rajauria and Nissreen Abu-Ghannam. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Seaweeds are important sources of carotenoids, and numerous studies have shown the beneficial effects of these pigments on human health. In the present study, Himanthalia elongata brown seaweed was extracted with a mixture of low polarity solvents, and the crude extract was separated using analytical thin-layer chromatography (TLC). The separated compounds were tested for their potential antioxidant capacity and antimicrobial activity against Listeria monocytogenes bacteria using TLC bioautography approach. For bio-autography, the coloured band on TLC chromatogram was visualized after spraying with DPPH and triphenyl-tetrazolium chloride reagents which screen antioxidant and antimicrobial compounds, respectively, and only one active compound was screened on the TLC plate. Preliminary identification of this active compound was done by comparing its colour and (retention factor) value with the authentic fucoxanthin standard. Further, the active compound was purified using preparative TLC. This purified compound showed a strong antioxidant (EC50: g/mL) and antimicrobial (inhibition zone: 10.27 mm, 25  g compound/disc) activities, which were examined by DPPH scavenging and agar disc-diffusion bioassay, respectively. The bioactivity shown by the purified compound was almost similar to the fucoxanthin standard. The characteristic UV-visible and FT-IR spectra of the purified active compound completely matched with the standard. Hence, the main active compound in H. elongata was identified as fucoxanthin.