In-Vitro Antioxidant Capacity and Bioactive Compounds Preservation Post-Drying on Berrycacti (Myrtillocactus geometrizans)

  •  Priscila Santiago-Mora    
  •  Anaberta Cardador-Martinez    
  •  Carmen Tellez-Perez    
  •  Jose Montejano-Gaitan    
  •  Sandra Martin del Campo    


Berrycactus is a cactus which does not require special agronomic attention, the berries are consumed locally and its commercialization is rather scarce because of the extremely short shelf-life. The significance of the application of any drying methods used to extend the shelf-life on the berrycacti is currently unknown. The aim of this work was to preserve berrycacti (Myrtillocactus geometrizans) and test the bioactive compounds and antioxidant capacity using two distinctive drying methods, freeze-drying (FD) and Instant Controlled Pressure Drop (DIC). Ripe berrycacti was chosen for the drying procedures because the antioxidant capacity and levels of soluble phenols and betalains were at their peak. Colour, phenols, non-extractable polyphenols, tannins, betalains, and antioxidant capacity were considered as factors to determine drying efficacy. Only colour parameters could discriminate between FD and DIC, concluding that both methods are suitable and efficient for preservation of antioxidant properties and retention of bioactive compounds. Both drying methods demonstrated higher in-vitro antioxidant capacity compared to the fresh fruit; highlighting the increase of non-extractable polyphenols and condensed tannins, and good retention of betalains and ascorbic acid after the drying treatments. This research points to use this sustainable crop to provide added value to berrycacti while considering this fruit as functional food due to the antioxidant capacity present even after being processed.

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