Research Paper: Optimisation of Bee Pollen Extraction to Maximise Extractable Antioxidant Constituents

New research paper published in the highly regarded Antioxidants journal from our very own CRC researchers. This research by Ivan Lawag, Okhee Yoo, Lee Yong Lim, Katherine Hammer and Cornelia Locher, was published in a special issue called ‘Bee Products as a Source of Natural Antioxidants’.


This paper presents the findings of a comprehensive review on common bee pollen processing methods which can impact extraction efficiency and lead to differences in measured total phenolic content (TPC) and radical scavenging activity based on 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) and ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) data. This hampers the comparative analysis of bee pollen from different floral sources and geographical locations. Based on the review, an in- depth investigation was carried out to identify the most efficient process to maximise the extraction of components for measurement of TPC, DPPH and FRAP antioxidant activity for two bee pollen samples from western Australia (Jarrah and Marri pollen). Optimisation by Design of Experiment with Multilevel Factorial Analysis (Categorical) modelling was performed. The independent variables included pollen pulverisation, the extraction solvent (70% aqueous ethanol, ethanol, methanol and water) and the extraction process (agitation, maceration, reflux and sonication). The data demonstrate that non-pulverised bee pollen extracted with 70% aqueous ethanol using the agitation extraction method constitute the optimal conditions to maximise the extraction of phenolics and antioxidant principles in these bee pollen samples.

Lawag IL, Yoo O, Lim LY, Hammer K, Locher C. Optimisation of Bee Pollen Extraction to Maximise Extractable Antioxidant Constituents. Antioxidants. 2021; 10(7):1113.

Image: Ivan Lawag and Cornelia Locher