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Filipa B. Pimentel is a PhD student in Pharmaceutical Sciences (Nutrition and Food Science Speciality) at the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Porto, Portugal. Since 2012, she is a researcher of REQUIMTE (Rede de Química e Tecnologia), the largest network in Chemistry and Chemical Engineering established in Portugal, which is focused on the development of Sustainable Chemistry. Her research activities have been developed at the Department of Chemical Sciences of the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Porto in the food chemistry and nutrition fields. She has 21 publications, cited over 150 times. Formerly, she completed her degree in Nutrition Sciences at the Faculty of Nutrition and Food Sciences of the University of Porto in 2004, and a Master in Food Service Management from the same Faculty in 2011.
Over the last years, olive oil production increased worldwide. Along with the growth of this agro-industry sector, a high rate of residues has been produced. Olive pomace is the major output of olive oil processing. This olive by-product is a solid residue with high water and oil contents, being phytotoxic, due to its significant phenolics amount . Nonetheless, phenolics are bioactive compounds with well-recognized benefits for human health and well-being . Therefore, there is an increasing awareness to recover and apply these compounds on innovative food and/or cosmetic products. In order to assess the biocompounds composition of olive pomace, the proximate composition (total protein and lipids, ash, and moisture) and the profiles of vitamin E (HPLC-DAD-FLD), fatty acids (GC-FID) and phenolics (HPLC-DAD-FL/MSn) were determined. Furthermore, a sustainable process for antioxidants extraction - Multi-frequency Multimode Modulated (MMM) ultrasonic technique – and a conventional solid-liquid extraction were performed and compared . The total phenolics content and antioxidant activity (ferric reducing antioxidant power and DPPH• scavenging ability) of the extracts were analyzed in order to assess the efficacy of both extraction methodologies . The vitamin E profile of olive pomace comprised the vitamers ?-tocopherol, ?-tocopherol, ?-tocotrienol and ?-tocopherol. ?-Tocopherol was the major form present (2.63 mg/100 g olive pomace). The fatty acid analysis showed that the lipid fraction of olive pomace was especially rich in oleic acid (75%), followed by palmitic (10%), linoleic (9%), and stearic (3%) acids. The major phenolic compounds identified were distributed as follows: hydroxytyrosol > comselogoside > elenolic acid derivative > tyrosol > oleoside riboside. Hydroxytyrosol content was 238.4 mg/100 g d.w. of olive pomace, while tyrosol was present in lower amount (9.6 mg/100 g). Concerning the antioxidants extraction, the MMM technique allowed a faster (5 min) and higher recovery (p<0.05) of the compounds, compared to the conventional solid-liquid extraction (60 min). Hence, it seems to be a very promising green and effective methodology to extract antioxidants from olive pomace. Attending to the profile and content of the bioactive compounds present either in lipid fraction or in the aqueous fraction of the olive pomace, this residue is an exploitable source to recover bioactive compounds. Olive pomace valorization is, at this moment, mandatory, and the added-value products that can be obtained from it allow to foreseen new innovative industrial applications in a circular economy perspective.