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Journal of Chemistry
Volume 2015, Article ID 923142, 8 pages
Research Article

Antioxidants in Varieties of Chicory (Cichorium intybus L.) and Wild Poppy (Papaver rhoeas L.) of Southern Italy

Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Biologiche ed Ambientali (Di.S.Te.B.A.), Università del Salento, Via Provinciale Lecce-Monteroni, 73100 Lecce, Italy

Received 25 November 2014; Accepted 3 March 2015

Academic Editor: Volker Böhm

Copyright © 2015 Anna Montefusco 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.


We report the hydrophilic and lipophilic antioxidant activities, as well as the total phenol, flavonoid, tocochromanol (tocopherol and tocotrienol), and carotenoid contents in the edible portion of wild and cultivated varieties of chicory (Cichorium intybus L.) and in the basal rosette leaves of the wild species of poppy (Papaver rhoeas L.), known by natives as “paparina,” collected in the countryside of Salento (South Apulia, Italy). We analyzed (1) two cultivars of chicory, the “Catalogna” harvested in the area between S. Pietro Vernotico and Tuturano (Brindisi) and the “Otrantina” harvested in Otranto (Lecce); (2) two wild chicory ecotypes harvested in S. Pietro Vernotico (Brindisi) and Statte (Taranto), respectively; (3) the basal leaves of wild poppy harvested in Sternatia (Lecce). In all samples, our results showed that the hydrophilic antioxidant activity is, generally, higher than the lipophilic activity. Poppy leaves exhibited the highest hydrophilic and lipophilic antioxidant activities and the highest concentration of total phenols and flavonoids. Tocopherols were detected only as traces. Among the extracted carotenoids, lutein and β-carotene were the most abundant in all analyzed samples. Total carotenoid content was greater in wild than in cultivated plants.