Essential oil composition of Pimpinella anisum L. fruits from various European countries

Orav A, Raal A, Arak E
Natural Product Research: Formerly Natural Product Letters, 2008


Variations in the essential oil composition of Pimpinella anisum L. fruits obtained from different geographical areas of Europe were determined using capillary GC and GC–MS techniques. The essential oil content of the samples was 10.0–53.6 mL kg−1 and did not confirm to the European Pharmacopoeia standard in 5 samples out of 14. A total of 21 compounds were identified and significant quantitative differences were observed among the samples. The major component wastrans-anethole (76.9–93.7%); the other principal compounds in oils were γ-himachalene (0.4–8.2%), trans-pseudoisoeugenyl 2-methylbutyrate (0.4–6.4%), p-anisaldehyde (tr-5.4%) and methylchavicol (0.5–2.3%). The highest content of trans-anethole (>90%) was found in the samples from Greece, Hungary, Scotland, Lithuania, Italy, and Germany (2 samples). Essential oil of aniseed from Estonia was rich in γ-himachalene (8.2%) and trans-pseudoisoeugenyl 2-methylbutyrate (6.4%). The sample from France contained the highest amount of anisaldehyde (5.4%) comparing with other samples (0–3.1%). β-Bourbonene and α-farnesene are determined in anise oil for the first time.


Orav A, Raal A, Arak E. Essential oil composition of Pimpinella anisum L. fruits from various European countries. Nat Prod Res. 2008;22(3):227-232.

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