Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Biotechnology Science and Engineering

Committee Chair

William N. Setzer

Committee Member

Bernhard Vogler

Committee Member

Robert Lawton

Committee Member

Pamela Twigg

Committee Member

Debra M. Moriarity


Lonchocarpus, Flavonoids, Antioxidants, Phytochemicals


Natural product research plays a crucial role in the discovery of new drugs for the treatment of human diseases. One plant genus that has been shown to contain a variety of compounds with many different activities but has yet to be thoroughly investigated is the genus Lonchocarpus (Fabaceae, Papilionoideae). In this work, three species of Lonchocarpus from Monteverde, Costa Rica were investigated. Each of the species underwent antioxidant-guided fractionation to isolate compounds that are responsible for the extracts' antioxidant activity. Antioxidant activity was evaluated using two antioxidant assays, the 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical assay and the ferric reducing ability of plasma (FRAP) assay. Both assays used UV measurements to determine the antioxidant activities of the crude extracts, super-fractions, and isolated compounds. Several compounds were isolated and identified; these compounds were found to be different than any compounds identified previously in other Lonchocarpus species. Unfortunately, none of the compounds isolated were found to have significant antioxidant activity, but further studies could provide insight into other uses for these compounds.



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