Estimation of Ascorbic Acid in Intact Acerola (Malpighia emarginata DC) Fruit by NIRS and Chemometric Analysis

Pereira De Moraes, Francisca, Costa, Rosangela Camara, Medeiros-De-morais, Camilo De lelis orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-2573-787X, Macedo de Medeiros, Fabio Goncalves, Fernandes, Tassia Rayane Nascimento, Hoskin, Roberta Targino and Gomes de Lima, Kassio (2019) Estimation of Ascorbic Acid in Intact Acerola (Malpighia emarginata DC) Fruit by NIRS and Chemometric Analysis. Horticulturae, 5 (1).

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Acerola fruit is one of the richest natural sources of ascorbic acid ever known. As a consequence, acerola fruit and its products are demanded worldwide for the production of health supplements and the development of functional products. However, the analytical determination of ascorbic acid is time-consuming and costly. In this study, we show a non-destructive, reliable, and fast method to measure the ascorbic acid content in intact acerola, using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) associated with multivariate calibration methods. Models using variable selection by means of interval partial least squares (iPLS) and a genetic algorithm (GA) were tested. The best model for ascorbic acid content, based on the prediction performance, was the GA-PLS method with second derivative spectral pretreatment, with a root mean square error of cross-validation equal to 22.9 mg/100 g, root mean square error of prediction equal to 46.3 mg/100 g, ratio of prediction to deviation equal to 8.0, determination coefficient for calibration equal to 0.98 and determination coefficient for prediction equal to 0.96. The current methodology, using NIR spectroscopy and chemometrics, is a promising and rapid tool to determine the ascorbic acid content of intact acerola fruit.

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