Volume 1, Issue 4


The Lebanese Citrus Aurantium: A Promising Future in Medicinal Phytochemistry


Author: Salim Makhoul, Youssef Bakkour, Hanna El-Nakat*, Fawaz El Omar

Abstract: The West Bekaa region of Lebanon is mostly an agricultural land where traditional herbal medicine is a common practice.  Many medicinal applications are especially attributed to the Citrus aurantium plant mainly used in the food and drink industry. In this work, the essential oil of Citrus aurantium is studied in an attempt to find an explanation for the different medical applications of this plant extract which is widely known among locals.  Using Gas Chromatography coupled to Mass Spectrometry, twenty-six different chemicals were identified and quantified.  These include the major constituent, Linalool, (29.99%), Bergamol (14.94%), Farnesol (9.86%) and D-Limonene (8.42%). The latter as well as Linalool are known to have anticancer effects, thus representing major components in anticancer treatments.  Their proportions in the studied essential oil and the presence of the other components (a-thujene, a-pinene, Camphene, Sabinene, b-pinene, b-Myrcene, p-Cymene, Ocimene (E), Linalool oxide (Trans), Linalool oxide (Cis), Terpinen-4-ol, Terpineol, Nerol (Or Cis-Geraniol), Neral, Geranial, Neryl acetate, Geranyl acetate, Nerolidol, Farnesal, Eicosane, Tetracosane, Pentacosane) have amplified the importance of Citrus aurantium as a scientifically-proven medicinal plant thus justify its diverse medical applications.

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