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Aims: Caesalpinioideae species have great medicinal and food values. In this work, six Caesalpinioideae species that grow abundantly in central India were selected for chemical investigation: Delonix regia, Entada gigas, Leucaena leucocephala, Mimosa pudica, Parkia javanica and Senna siamea. The objective of the present work is to describe the phytochemical and mineral composition and the bioaccumulation potentialities of the seeds from aforementioned species.
Methodology: Spectrophotometric, enzymatic and X-ray fluorescence spectrophotometric techniques were used for the quantification of polyphenols, starch and mineral contents, respectively.
Results: The sum of the total concentrations of 17 macro- and micronutrients (P, S, Cl, K, Rb, Mg, Ca, Sr, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Cu, Zn, Se, Mo and Pb), oil, protein and total starch in the six seeds were in the 20253-78489 mg/kg, 3.1-30.1%, 52.9-91.5% and 5.4–41.0% range, respectively. The highest concentrations of Fe, oil and phenolics were observed in M. pudica seeds. Both thermal and spectral characteristics allowed to differentiate M. pudica and P. javanica seeds (with the highest caloric contents) from the seeds from the other species.
Conclusion: The selected Caesalpinioideae seeds are potential sources of the nutrients (i.e., P, S, K, Mg, Ca and Fe) and polyphenols, which are needed for biological metabolism and human health. The presence of heavy metals was well below safety limits, enabling their medicinal uses.
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