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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2012, Article ID 485193, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1100/2012/485193
Research Article

Diversity of Catechin in Northeast Indian Tea Cultivars

1Department of Biochemistry, Tocklai Experimental Station, Tea Research Association, Assam, Jorhat 785008, India
2Department of Soil, Tocklai Experimental Station, Tea Research Association, Assam, Jorhat 785008, India
3Department of Chemistry, Gauhati University, Assam, Guwahati 781014, India

Received 10 May 2011; Accepted 10 October 2011

Academic Editor: Ornella Abollino

Copyright © 2012 Santanu Sabhapondit 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.

Abstract

Tea (Camellia sinensis L.) leaf contains a large amount of catechins (a group of very active flavonoids) which contribute to major quality attributes of black tea. Based on morphological characters tea plants were classified as Assam, China, and Cambod varieties. The present study is an attempt for biochemical fingerprinting of the tea varieties based on catechin composition in green leaf of cultivars grown in Northeast India. Assam variety cultivars contained the highest level of catechins followed by Cambod and China. The average catechin contents were 231 ± 7 mg g-1, 202 ± 5 mg g-1, and 157 ± 4 mg g-1 of dry weight of green leaf for Assam, Cambod, and China cultivars, respectively. Among the individual catechins the variations in epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and epigallocatechin (EGC) were the most prominent among the varieties. High EGC content was found to be a characteristic of Assam variety which was further corroborated through multivariate analysis.