Comparative Study for Methods of Extraction of Harmala Alkaloids

Author : Farid Abd-Elrehim Abd-Elaziz Badria and Mohamed Mohamed Saad Abu Habib

Peganum harmala L. (Zygophyllaceae) is a wild flowering plant grows in Egypt and Mediterranean region. The seeds of this plant contain 2-5% Harman alkaloids which retain diverse pharmacological activity. Therefore, developing an efficient and economic method for extraction the alkaloids will pose a great importance for both medical and economical aspects. Microwave assisted extraction (MAE) and Ultrasonic assisted extraction (UAE) were used in comparison to the commonly used Soxhlet extraction method. MAE presented the highest yield of alkaloids (4.7 and 4.8%) after 15 and 30 minutes respectively. Meanwhile UAE produced 3.7 and 4.3% after 15 and 30 minutes respectively. However conventional Soxhlet extraction yielded 4.9 % after 7 hours of complete exhaustion extraction. This study revealed that MAE proved to be the most efficient and economic method of extraction for harmala alkaloids in comparison to other commonly used methods.

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