Triacylglycerol and triterpene ester composition of shea nuts from seven African countries. uri icon

abstract

  • The compositions of the triacylglycerol (TAG) and triterpene ester (TE) fractions of the kernel fats (n-hexane extracts; shea butter) of the shea tree (Vitellaria paradara; Sapotaceae) were determined for 36 samples from seven sub-Saharan countries, i.e., Cote d'lvoire, Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroun, Chad, Sudan, and Uganda. The principal TAGs are stearic-oleic-stearic (SOS; mean 31.2 %), SOO (27.7 %), and OOO (10.8 %). The TE fractions contents are in the range of 0.5-6.5 %, and contain alpha-amyrin cinnamate (1; mean 29.3%) as the predominant TE followed by butyrospermol cinnamate (4c; 14.8 %), alpha-amyrin acetate (1a; 14.1 %), lupeol cinnamate (3c; 9.0 %), beta-amyrin cinnamate (2c; 7.6 %), lupeol acetate (3a; 7.2 %), butyrospermol acetate (4a; 5.8 %), and beta-amyrin acetate (2a; 4.9 %). Shea kernel fats from West African provenances contained, in general, higher levels of high-melting TAGs such as SOS, and higher amount of TEs than those from East African provenances. No striking regional difference in the composition of the TE fractions was observed.

publication date

  • 2011
  • 2011