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Ennouri M.,Higher Institute of Applied science and Technology of Mahdia | Ennouri M.,Alimentary Analysis Unit | Ammar I.,Alimentary Analysis Unit | Khemakhem B.,University of Sfax | Attia H.,Alimentary Analysis Unit
Journal of Medicinal Food

Opuntia ficus-indica f. inermis (cactus pear) flowers have wide application in folk medicine. However, there are few reports focusing on their biological activity and were no reports on their chemical composition. The nutrient composition and hexane extracts of Opuntia flowers at 4 flowering stages and their antibacterial and antifungal activities were investigated. The chemical composition showed considerable amounts of fiber, protein, and minerals. Potassium (K) was the predominant mineral followed by calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), sodium (Na), iron (Fe), and zinc (Zn). The main compounds in the various hexane extracts were 9.12-octadecadienoic acid (29-44%) and hexadecanoic acid (8.6-32%). The antibacterial activity tests showed that O. inermis hexane extracts have high effectiveness against Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus, making this botanical source a potential contender as a food preservative or food control additive. © 2014, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. and Korean Society of Food Science and Nutrition. Source

Ammar I.,Alimentary Analysis Unit | Ennouri M.,Alimentary Analysis Unit | Ennouri M.,Higher Institute of Applied science and Technology of Mahdia | Khemakhem B.,University of Sfax | Attia H.,Alimentary Analysis Unit
Industrial Crops and Products

The chemical composition of hexane extracts from flowers belonging to two species of prickly pear, Opuntia ficus-indica (L.) Miller and Opuntia stricta (Haw.) Haworth has been studied by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry in four developmental stages of flower: vegetative, initial flowering, full flowering, and post-flowering stages. Remarkable differences were noted between the flowers' compositions. The main compounds were carboxylic acid (28-97%), terpenes (0.2-57%), esters (0.2-27%), and alcohols (<1.8%).The study of the biological activities showed that extracts were active in vitro towards four bacteria and two fungal strains. It exhibited remarkable activity against Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus, and Escherichia coli.Antioxidant activity of the flowers extracts was evaluated by the 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical method.Our findings demonstrate the interest of Opuntia flowers extract as a source of bioactive substances and its potential preservative use in food. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. Source

Ammar I.,University of Sfax | Ennouri M.,University of Sfax | Ennouri M.,Higher Institute of Applied science and Technology of Mahdia | Bali O.,University of Sfax | Attia H.,University of Sfax
LWT - Food Science and Technology

Opuntia flowers belonging to two species of prickly pear were evaluated at four flowering stages: vegetative, initial flowering, full flowering and post-flowering stage, for possible use as a potential source in the food enrichment. Chemical composition including moisture, ash, protein, fat, soluble sugars, total fibers, mineral amounts and fatty acid profiles of Opuntia ficus-indica and Opuntia stricta flowers were investigated. Functional properties (swelling capacity (SWC), water holding capacity (WHC), water solubility index (WSI) and oil holding capacity (OHC)) were also studied. Results showed that during the maturation of flowers, there is a decrease in protein contents whereas fat contents increase, for both species. High minerals amounts were noticed in Opuntia flowers and they can be considered as an excellent source of minerals. The fatty acids profiles were dominated by the palmitic acid (38-59%). The techno-functional properties (SWC, WSI, WHC and OHC) were found to be important and they can be modulated according to the temperatures. Owing to its chemical profile and functional properties, Opuntia flowers could be used as an ingredient to improve different physical and nutritional properties of foods. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Salem F.,National Institute of science and Technology of the Sea | Afef N.,University of Monastir | Ben Ouada H.,University of Monastir | Ben Mansour H.,University of Monastir | Ben Mansour H.,Higher Institute of Applied science and Technology of Mahdia
Bioremediation Journal

Industrialization is a boon for developing countries such as Tunisia. However, textile effluents that are being discharged are environmental pollutants, extremely toxic to plants and other living organisms, including humans. The current study was conducted to determine the phytotoxic effect of textile effluents, collected near an industrial zone in the center of Tunisia (Ksar Helal), on the germination and various growth indices of durum wheat (Triticumaestivum L.). Results showed that textile effluent treatments reduced significantly the percentage of seed germination and slowed its kinetic as compared with control. Roots and leaves were also significantly reduced. The phytotoxicity was highly reduced from textile effluents after aerobic biotreatment with bacteria. It can be concluded that the biological treatment process of textile wastewater might serve as a fertilizer production that is able to improve the growth of plants. These results are encouraging in the context of developing a low-budget technology for the effective management of these effluents. © 2015 © 2015 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. Source

Ammar I.,Alimentary Analysis Unit | Ennouri M.,Alimentary Analysis Unit | Ennouri M.,Higher Institute of Applied science and Technology of Mahdia | Attia H.,Alimentary Analysis Unit
Industrial Crops and Products

The effect of different extracting solvents used by two methods on the total polyphenols and flavonoids contents of Opuntia ficus-indica flowers was studied. The antioxidant activity of these extracts was investigated by using DPPH radical scavenging, reducing power and β-carotene bleaching assays. The results showed that extracts exhibited different levels of polyphenols contents and antioxidant activity. Thus, solvents with different polarities had significant effect on antioxidant activity. The methanolic and aqueous extracts proved best in terms of high extraction of phenolic compounds and antioxidant activity. Moreover, it can be concluded that extracts obtained by Soxhlet method were the most interesting in terms of antioxidant activity and proved that polyphenols responsible for the antioxidant activity of O. ficus-indica flowers are thermostable. These results showed that O. ficus-indica flowers could be a potential natural source of antioxidants that can be used in food and nutraceutical applications. © 2014 Elsevier B.V. Source

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