Comparative assessment of phytochemical profiles and antioxidant properties of Tunisian and Egyptian anise (Pimpinella anisum L.) seeds

Anis (Pimpinella anisum L.) seeds obtained from two geographic origins Tunisia (TAS) and Egypt (EAS) were studied regarding their biochemical composition and the antioxidant potential of their extracts. The results showed that the highest value of oil was detected with TAS compared to that of EAS ones. Ten (10) fatty acids were identified for the two locations and petroselinic acid was the most prevalent in oil seeds and interestingly, TAS displayed a significantly higher level of this acid than EAS. Besides, TAS exhibited slightly higher essential oil yield than the Egyptian variety and that trans-anethole was the dominant for the two provenances. In both accessions, the highest total phenolic, flavonoid and tannin content was obtained with ethyl acetate fraction. Therefore, TAS exhibited higher chelating and reducing powers than EAS which may be due to a slightly different phenolic composition between the two accession seed extracts. The phenolic compositions of TAS and EAS revealed that ethyl acetate extracts showed higher proportions of naringin, chlorogenic acid and rosmarinic acid. However, ethanol extracts were richer in larcitrin, rosmarinic acid and cirsimartin. The overall results revealed that aniseeds might constitute a novel source of natural antioxidants and could be used as food additive.