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Journal of Chemistry
Volume 2014, Article ID 843908, 8 pages
Research Article

Characterization of Fatty Acid Profile of Argan Oil and Other Edible Vegetable Oils by Gas Chromatography and Discriminant Analysis

1Departamento de Nutrición y Bromatología, Facultad de Farmacia, Universidad de Granada, Campus de Cartuja, 18071 Granada, Spain
2Departamento de Fisiología y Bioquímica de la Nutrición Animal, Estación Experimental del Zaidín (CSIC), Camino del Jueves s/n, Armilla, 18100 Granada, Spain

Received 1 April 2014; Revised 4 July 2014; Accepted 24 July 2014; Published 18 August 2014

Academic Editor: M. Beatriz P. P. Oliveira

Copyright © 2014 Ascensión Rueda et al. 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.


Virgin argan oil is an emergent oil that is being introduced into specialized international markets as a healthy and luxury food. In order to compare the fatty acid composition of argan oil with that of the eleven other vegetable edible oils, a combination of gas chromatography as analytical technique and multivariate discriminant analysis was applied. This analysis takes into account the conjoint effect of all the variables analyzed in the discrimination between oils and also shows the contribution of each variable to oils characterization. The model correctly classified 100% oil samples. According to the fatty acid composition, argan oil showed closest similarity firstly with sesame oil and secondly with high oleic sunflower oil. Olive oil was close to avocado oil and almond oil, followed by argan oil. Thus, similarities and differences between vegetable oils based on their fatty acid profile were established by the application of multivariate discriminant analysis. This method was proven to be a useful tool to study the relationships between oils according to the fat composition and to determine the importance of the fatty acid variables on the oils classification.