Phytochemical and morphological characterization of hop (Humulus lupulus L.) cones over five developmental stages using high performance liquid chromatography coupled to time-of-flight mass spectrometry, ultrahigh performance liquid chromatography photodiode array detection, and light microscopy techniques.
Kavalier AR., Litt A., Ma C., Pitra NJ., Coles MC., Kennelly EJ., Matthews PD.
Hop (Humulus lupulus L.) inflorescences, commonly known as "hop cones", are prized for their terpenophenolic contents, used in beer production and, more recently, in biomedical applications. In this study we investigated morphological and phytochemical characteristics of hop cones over five developmental stages, using liquid chromatography coupled to time-of-flight mass spectrometry (LC-TOF-MS), and ultrahigh performance liquid chromatography photodiode array detection (UHPLC-PDA) methods to quantitate 21 polyphenolics and seven terpenophenolics. Additionally, we used light microscopy to correlate phytochemical quantities with changes in the morphology of the cones. Significant increases in terpenophenolics, concomitant with glandular trichome development and associated gross morphological changes, were mapped over development to fluctuations in contents of polyphenolic constituents and their metabolic precursor compounds. The methods reported here can be used for targeted metabolic profiling of flavonoids, phenolic acids, and terpenophenolics in hops, and are applicable to quantitation in other crops.