Plant and Soil

, Volume 374, Issue 1–2, pp 549–563 | Cite as

Polyphenols, tannins and antioxidant activities of eight true mangrove plant species in South China

  • Ying Wang
  • Haowen Zhu
  • Nora Fung Yee Tam
Regular Article


Background and aims

(i) compare the concentrations of total polyphenols (TP) and condensed tannins (CT), and CT profiles in different organs of mature trees and seedlings of eight true mangrove species in Hong Kong; (ii) examine the antioxidant activities of CT and (iii) relate the non-enzymatic antioxidative defence system with the vertical zonation pattern of mangrove species.


Mature trees and seedlings of eight species were collected from a Hong Kong mangrove swamp to determine TP and CT concentrations and the antioxidant activities of CT.


According to TP concentrations, the true mangrove species could be broadly classified into three groups, (i) Lumnitzera racemosa and Aegiceras corniculatum > (ii) Heritiera littoralis, Excoecaria agallocha, Bruguiera gymnorrhiza and Kandelia obovata > (iii) Acanthus ilicifolius and Avicennia marina. The last two are pioneer species in the most foreshore location. They also had significantly lower antioxidant activities, CT concentrations and different CT profiles than the other six species in mid- and low-tides.


Classification of the eight true mangrove species into three groups based on polyphenols was similar to their vertical zonation from land to sea. The relationships between these antioxidants and zonation should be further verified by transplantation studies.


Condensed tannins Free radical scavenging potential Reactive oxygen species (ROS) Mangrove Vertical zonation 



The work described in this paper was financially supported by the Public Science and Technology Research Funds Projects of Ocean (200905009-4), the Innovation of Science and Technology Commission of Shenzhen Municipality (JCYJ20120829161727) and the Foundation of Human Settlements and Environment Commission of Shenzhen Municipality (2009).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biology and ChemistryCity University of Hong KongKowloonChina
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory in Marine PollutionCity University of Hong KongKowloonChina

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