MURTA (Ugni molinae Turcz.): A REVIEW ON CHEMICAL COMPOSITION, FUNCTIONAL COMPONENTS AND BIOLOGICAL ACTIVITIES OF LEAVES AND FRUITS
Jéssica López1*, Antonio Vega-Gálvez2, Angela Rodríguez2; Elsa Uribe2, 4, Cristina Bilbao-Sainz3
Murta (Ugni molinae Turcz.) is a native species from central and southern Chile. There is an increasing interest in the plant due to its high content of essential nutrients and beneficial phytochemicals to human health. In fact, the berries contain a wide variety of anthocyanins, which are the main antioxidant compounds. There are some studies on the phytochemical composition and biological activities of murta fruit, but human intervention studies using whole fruits are still lacking. This manuscript reviews the nutritional and phytochemical composition of murta berries and leaves. However, more scientific background is needed to validate the properties of this species so as to gain complete knowledge of the whole shrub in order to develop functional foods and nutraceuticals.
Key words: phenolic compounds, anthocyanins, antibacterial activity, antioxidant activity, murta berry and leaves.
1 School of Food Engineering, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso, Chile
2 Department of Food Engineering, Universidad de La Serena, La Serena, Chile.
3 Bioproduct Chemistry and Engineering, US Department of Agriculture, Albany, California 94710
4 Instituto de Investigación Multidisciplinario en Ciencia y Tecnología, Av. Raúl Bitrán Nachary 1305, Casilla 599, La Serena, Chile
* Corresponding autor E-mail: [email protected]