Proanthocyanidins: what are they and why is it important to characterize them?

30 / 03 2021

Proanthocyanidins (PACs) are a class of polyphenols found in fruits, flowers, seeds and barks of many botanical species. The best known are the type-A proanthocyanidins present in cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon), also known as American cranberry, whose extraction products are used in many supplements for the prevention of bacterial cystitis.

Type-A proanthocyanidins are able to compete with Escherichia coli for adhesion to the mucous membrane of the bladder, thus preventing the onset of cystitis.

The plant extracts containing proanthocyanidins present on the market differ in many aspects, including the method of standardization. The analyses that are usually carried out consist of a quantitative determination of proanthocyanidins by HPLC and spectrophotometry (BL-DMAC, Ph. EU).

Our laboratory, in addition to carrying out the classic quantitative determinations of proanthocyanidins, also carries out analyses with a fluorescence detector to evaluate the degree of polymerization and in mass spectrometry to characterize the bonds that are established between the monomers (PAC A, PAC B) and to further investigate the phytochemical profile of the extracts.

For further information, please contact us at +39 334 6812046 or by email at

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