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Detection of Essential Oils Adulteration: A Quick Overview and Current Challenges| Biomed Grid

Journal: American Journal of Biomedical Science & Research (Vol.4, No. 1)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ;

Page : 10-11

Keywords : Biomedical Science and Research Journals; biomedical open access journals; biomedical journal impact factor; Biomed Grid;

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Essential oils are highly appreciated raw materials due to a variety of their intrinsic characteristics and properties. They are complex mixtures of volatile compounds produced by plants as secondary metabolites; communicational and defence roles were attributed to constituents of essential oils [1]. Over the years, many researchers have reported a great variety of properties of essential oils including antimicrobial and antioxidant activities, as well as, some other effects of biological interest that could be used in human and veterinary medicine [1]. Therefore, not only wellknown essential oils are more demanded in the market, but also enormous efforts are focused on the extraction and characterization of alternative sources of these products. From an economic point of view, this fact can significate the opening of opportunities for developing countries in South Asia, Africa, and Latin America since many of them have great biodiversity within their territories and essential oils prices tend to increase year by year. Moreover, the technologies for the extraction of essential oils (steam distillation, hydro distillation, cold expression, and supercritical fluid extraction) are well known and available at reasonable costs. Only considering the high demand and the highly appreciated properties of some essential oils, for example, those extracted from lavender or frankincense, there is no wonder that counterfeit and adulterated essential oils can be offered in the market. The formulation of medicinal products with counterfeit and adulterated essential oils could be very dangerous and put in serious risk the health of consumers. As an example, clove essential oil is used in dental care, in fact, the characteristic odour of a dentistry office is due to eugenol, the main component of this essential oil. In earlier work, we reported the occurrence in the market of adulterated clove essential oil, and the adulterant was benzyl alcohol [3]. It is not difficult to imagine the adverse effects on the health of a person treated with a product based on clove essential oil with benzyl alcohol as adulterant. It is out of question that strict controls must be carried out, not only by governmental institution but also by companies working with essential oils as raw materials. One of the aims of using essential oils instead of synthetic substances in cosmetic and pharma products (among others) is to obtain natural products, which have fewer secondary effects and high acceptance by the customers. Clearly, the adulteration by the illegal addition of cheaper substances to essential oils modifies the quality of the final product and goes against this aim.

Last modified: 2019-07-24 14:18:44