Phytochemical Profile and Properties Analysis of Propolis

A special issue of Plants (ISSN 2223-7747). This special issue belongs to the section "Phytochemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 May 2024 | Viewed by 1204

Special Issue Editors

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Guest Editor
Department of Pharmacognosy and Herbal Medicines, Wroclaw Medical Univeristy, ul. Borowska 211a, 50-556 Wrocław, Poland
Interests: plant; propolis; LC-MS; LC-DAD; Populus ssp.; SPE

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Guest Editor
Faculty of Biological Sciences, Botanical Garden, University of Wrocław, 23 Sienkiewicza Str., 50-525 Wrocław, Poland
Interests: flax; Drosera ssp.; Dionea ssp.; Solidago ssp.; moss; in vitro culture; cell wall; plant metabolites; antioxidation; bee glue; biomedical products

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Guest Editor
Department of Environment, Earth and Physical Sciences, University of Siena, 53100 Siena, SI, Italy
Interests: medicinal plants; pharmaceutical biology; phytochemistry; extraction methods; bee products; italian flora; bioactive byproducts

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Propolis, also known as bee glue, is a resinous-waxy substance produced by different bee species. Most of the propolis worldwide is collected from honeybees (Apis mellifera L.). Due to multiple healing properties, propolis is widely used around the world. Its main activities include anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant and wound treatment. Dependences between composition and activity of bee glue are only partially known, despite its properties being well-known. There are many things which may impact propolis activity, but among the most important are plant precursors.

Propolis plant precursors are different resins, gums and exudates produced by plant organs. They may be produced in the physiological or pathological state of the plant (e.g. balsams). Most often, these exudates originate from plant buds, bark or sometimes flowers. Despite many potential plant precursors in local flora, bees exhibit a strong preference to collect specific types of material. For this reason, propolis usually derives from one or two main plant precursors. Therefore, it is possible to divide propolis in several types such as poplar type (Populus nigra L. and Populus species similar have exudates' composition).

As we described before, the plant origin of propolis is one of the most important factors, which affects propolis activity. Usually, propolis originates from one main plant precursor, but bees may also collect material from minor plant sources. Most of the published papers are mainly focused on searching for one main plant precursor, while minor precursors may also have significant impact on propolis activities. Therefore, the current issue is focused of different techniques of phytochemical research of propolis plant composition and tracking its potential plant precursors as well as searching for dependencies between composition and plant origin.

In summary, we encourage submission of manuscripts which are focused on analyzing propolis composition by different techniques (TLC-MS, LC-MS, GC-MS, etc.), detailed investigation of plant precursors and searching for dependences between plant composition and activity of propolis (chemometric and statistical analyses).

Dr. Piotr Okińczyc
Dr. Jakub Szperlik
Dr. Marco Biagi
Guest Editors

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  • Propolis
  • bee glue
  • plant precursor
  • analysis
  • HPLC
  • MS
  • MS/MS
  • GC
  • GC-MS
  • chemometry

Published Papers (1 paper)

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14 pages, 367 KiB  
Examination of Raw Samples and Ethanol Extracts of Gerês Propolis Collected in Different Years
by Ana Rita Caetano, Rafaela Dias Oliveira, Rui Filipe Cerqueira Pereira, Tiago Vidal Cardoso, Andreia Cardoso and Cristina Almeida-Aguiar
Plants 2023, 12(22), 3909; - 20 Nov 2023
Viewed by 935
Propolis, a natural resin created by bees, has garnered significant attention from both the scientific community and industry due to an impressive range of bioactivities. Nonetheless, the intrinsic variability in its chemical composition and bioactive profiles has been hindering propolis’ full potential use. [...] Read more.
Propolis, a natural resin created by bees, has garnered significant attention from both the scientific community and industry due to an impressive range of bioactivities. Nonetheless, the intrinsic variability in its chemical composition and bioactive profiles has been hindering propolis’ full potential use. We previously showed that ethanol extracts (EEs) of a Portuguese propolis sample (Gerês) collected over four consecutive years displayed similar chemical and biological profiles, a constancy never documented before. However, the characteristics of the unprocessed samples of Gerês propolis were never described. Hence, the central objective of this study is to assess the quality parameters of unprocessed propolis samples collected from Gerês (G), over a four-year period (2019–2022), alongside the analysis of the chemical composition and bioactivities of the EEs prepared with the same raw samples. The ash, wax, balsam and water contents of the unprocessed samples—G19 to G22—showed minor fluctuations, likely attributed to uncontrollable natural events impacting the propolis source and collection process. On the other hand, the antimicrobial and antioxidant activities of all the four ethanol extracts (G19.EE–G22.EE) consistently align with prior studies. Furthermore, the Gerês propolis extracts showed remarkable uniformity in chemical composition parameters too, particularly concerning total polyphenol, flavonoid and ortho-diphenol contents. In summary, our research reinforces the beneficial properties of propolis and show that extracts’ bioactivities remain within the reference ranges for Gerês propolis, despite minor differences in unprocessed samples, suggesting a consistent action over time. Thus, this work could be instrumental towards the establishment of standard parameters for propolis applications, offering valuable insights to this field of propolis research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phytochemical Profile and Properties Analysis of Propolis)
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