A Study of the Metabolome of Ricinus communis for Forensic Applications Academic Article uri icon


  • Investigations were undertaken to ascertain the appropriateness of studying the metabolome of Ricinus communis for cultivar and provenance determination. Seeds from 14 R. communis specimens (a total of 56 seeds) collected from the east coast of Australia were analyzed by high pressure liquid chromatography with UV detection (HPLC-UV), liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (LC-MS), and 1H NMR spectroscopy. The collected data were then analyzed using principle component analysis (PCA). For HPLC-UV analysis, six R. communis specimens were unambiguously identified by PCA as belonging to separate classes relating to specimen. LC-MS data allowed unique ions to be identified for four specimens. Conversely 10 specimens were unambiguously segregated in the PCA of the 1H NMR data. The ratio of ricinine 1 to demethylricinine analogues 2 and 3 was found to be important for specimen determination. These combined analyses suggested that a combination of HPLC-UV and 1H NMR in conjunction with PCA could allow for specimen differentiation.


  • Ovenden, Simon PB
  • Gordon, Benjamin R
  • Bagas, Christina K
  • Muir, Bob
  • Rochfort, Simone
  • Bourne, David J

publication date

  • 2010