Method for the determination of catechin and epicatechin enantiomers in cocoa-based ingredients and products by high-performance liquid chromatography: single-laboratory validation.
A single-laboratory validation study was performed for an HPLC method to identify and quantify the flavanol enantiomers (+)- and (-)-epicatechin and (+)- and (-)-catechin in cocoa-based ingredients and products. These compounds were eluted isocratically with an ammonium acetate-methanol mobile phase applied to a modified beta-cyclodextrin chiral stationary phase and detected using fluorescence. Spike recovery experiments using appropriate matrix blanks, along with cocoa extract, cocoa powder, and dark chocolate, were used to evaluate accuracy, repeatability, specificity, LOD, LOQ, and linearity of the method as performed by a single analyst on multiple days. In all samples analyzed, (-)-epicatechin was the predominant flavanol and represented 68-91% of the total monomeric flavanols detected. For the cocoa-based products, within-day (intraday) precision for (-)-epicatechin was between 1.46-3.22%, for (+)-catechin between 3.66-6.90%, and for (-)-catechin between 1.69-6.89%; (+)-epicatechin was not detected in these samples. Recoveries for the three sample types investigated ranged from 82.2 to 102.1% at the 50% spiking level, 83.7 to 102.0% at the 100% spiking level, and 80.4 to 101.1% at the 200% spiking level. Based on performance results, this method may be suitable for routine laboratory use in analysis of cocoa-based ingredients and products.