Abstract: Thymus capitatus is a Mediterranean plant characterized by its antioxidant polyphenols of which the most known are the carnosic and rosmarinic acids. In this way, this study aims to concentrate these acids by membrane processes. The thyme essential oil composition was established by capillary GC‐MS and 27 components were identified representing 98.93%± 1.97% of total oils. The antioxidant test for permeate and retentate of methanolic and aqueous extract were determined using 3 types of membranes. The results showed that the synthetic NF membrane is able to trap and concentrate phenolic compounds in the retentate much better than the NF commercial and UF synthetic membrane. The results of the total phenolic content (TPC) showed a significant value of the polyphenol content present in the aqueous extract with 175.53 mg Gallic Acid Equivalents (GAE)/g of extract. The spectrum of the aqueous extract of Thymus capitatus showed the presence of 3 visible peaks, the 1st one at 217 nm corresponding to the carnosic acid, the 2nd one at 277 nm for essential oils, and the last one at 326 nm attributed to the rosmarinic acid. The commercial membrane NF‐DK succeeded to concentrate rosmarinic acid and can be considered as a stage towards the concentration of this product with a high added value.
Sami Achour, Eltaief Khelifi, Yesmine Attia, Ezzeddine Ferjani, Ahmed Noureddine Hellal
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