Direct analysis and identification of triterpene glycosides by LC/MS in black cohosh, Cimicifuga racemosa, and in several commercially available black cohosh products.


He K, Zheng B, Kim CH, Rogers L, Zheng Q.




Planta Med


A method to directly identify triterpene glycosides using reversed-phase liquid chromatography with positive atmospheric pressure chemical ionization mass spectrometry (LC/(+)APCIMS) was developed. Based on the analysis of the molecular weight, fragment ions, selected ion chromatograms, a number of triterpene glycosides, including actein, 27-deoxyactein, cimicfugoside M, and cimicifugoside, from Cimicifuga racemosa were studied. A chromone, cimifugin, from C. foetida was also identified. Cimicifugoside M and cimifugin can specifically serve as indicators for species identification. The method can, therefore, be used to distinguish black cohosh products from among different plant species for quality control purposes.