Development of a methodology for the quantitative determination of essential oils using peroxic acids


A.M. Agafonov(1), I.P. Remezova(2), L.S. Anosova(1)
1-Donetsk National Medical University named after M. Gorky, 16, Ilyich Ave., Donetsk, 283003, DPR;
2-Pyatigorsk Medical and Pharmaceutical Institute – branch of the Volgograd State Medical University of the Ministry of Health of Russia, Kalinin Ave., 11, Pyatigorsk, 357500, Russian Federation

Introduction. Essential oils of plants are a variety of mixtures of compounds, most of which are terpenoids. They are characterized by the following pharmacological indicative properties: antiseptics against a wide range of bacteria and fungi (eucalyptus oil, cumin, cinnamon, clove oil); antispasmodics (mint oil); mucolytics and diuretics (turpentine oil from conifers); and also exhibit anti-inflammatory and wound healing effects. Aniseed oil stimulates the secretion of bronchial glands, ammonia promotes the release of sputum and its easy excretion. Quality control of medicines based on essential oils (anise oil) is very difficult and requires expensive equipment. Objective: to study the kinetics of the reaction of epoxidation with trans-anethole peroxic acid and, based on the data obtained, to develop a simple method for the quantitative determination of anise oil in ammonia-anise drops and in dill water. Material and methods. As objects for the study, ammonia-aniseed drops of factory manufacture ("LLC "Ternopharm"), extemporally prepared dill water ("LLC "Pharmacy No. 122") and the chemical substance trans-anetol were used. To quantify the main component of the essential oil, we used an epoxidation reaction using the highest aliphatic peroxic acid – peroxidecanoic acid (C10) as an oxidizer in methylene chloride at room temperature. Results. Kinetic curves of the reaction of epoxidation of the objects of study with peroxic acid are obtained. The stoichiometry of the reaction and the optimal conditions of the epoxidation reaction (t – 40 min, 293°K) and the reaction rate in dichloromethane (kef=0.3 l/mol·min) were established, and used for the analysis of ammonia-aniseed drops and dill water. Conclusion. Based on the data obtained, a simple method for determining essential oils using peroxic acids has been developed, which allows for quality control of medicines without the use of expensive equipment.

essential oils
ammonia-anise drops
dill water
quantitative determination.

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