Original Research

Metabolomic and chemometric profiles of Tribulus terrestris L. from three different locations in Mpumalanga province, South Africa

Ngwatshipane M. Mashabela, Tshepiso P. Ndhlovu, Wilfred Otang-Mbeng
Journal of Medicinal Plants for Economic Development | Vol 8, No 1 | a184 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jomped.v8i1.184 | © 2024 Ngwatshipane M. Mashabela, Tshepiso P. Ndhlovu, Wilfred Otang-Mbeng | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 20 October 2022 | Published: 23 January 2024

About the author(s)

Ngwatshipane M. Mashabela, Division of Soil Science, Agricultural Research Council Infruitec-Nietvoorbij, Stellenbosch, South Africa; and School of Biology and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Sciences, University of Mpumalanga, Mbombela, South Africa
Tshepiso P. Ndhlovu, School of Biology and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Sciences, University of Mpumalanga, Mbombela
Wilfred Otang-Mbeng, School of Biology and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Sciences, University of Mpumalanga, Mbombela, South Africa

Abstract

Background: Tribulus terrestris L. is a traditional herb regularly recognised as puncture vine, yellow vine, devils horn, goat head and caltrop, this is often a yearly shaggy herbaceous plant species with stems of up to 2m long, having a place to the family of Zygophyllaceae.

Aim: The study explored the therapeutic potential of this herb as it is being utilised for pharmaceutical purposes because of its furostanol saponins, which have a stimulating impact on characteristic testosterone levels.

Setting: The study took place in different locations of Mpumalanga Province, Bushbuckridge (24.8398°S, 31.0464°E), Kamagugu (25.4566° S, 31.0034° E) and Nkomatipoort (25.4510° S, 31.9587° E).

Methods: Utilising ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (UPLC-QTOF/MS), 50 metabolites were tentatively identified within the leaves of Tribulus terrestris L. from three diverse areas of Mpumalanga Province, South Africa.

Results: Metabolomic-chemometric analysis revealed that Parvispinoside B, F-Gitonin and Gitonin scored highest for the discrimination of Tribulus terrestris L. from three locale clusters. Heat maps showed designs and groupings based on the metabolite concentrations.

Conclusion: This study provided novel insights in terms of thorough identification of the secondary metabolites and characterization of the leaves of Tribulus terrestris L. in the areas studied.

Contribution: To the best of our knowledge, this study presents the first metabolite profile of Tribulus terrestris L. and its compositional differences in the Mpumalanga region, providing chemical-based evidence for its nutritive and/or health benefits


Keywords

gitonin; steroidal saponins; chemometric; UPLC-QTOF/MS; medicinal plants; PCA; heat map.

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