Epimedium koreanum Nakai is a famous Chinese herbal medicine for the treatment of impotence, osteoporosis, immune suppression and cardiovascular diseases. Drying is the most common and fundamental procedure in post-harvest processing of E. koreanum, which contributes to the variations of flavonoid content, especially prenylflavonoids, the bioactive components. In present study, effect of drying processes on flavonoid content and antioxidant activity were investigated. High performance liquid chromatography coupled with diode-array detection and electrospray ionization quadrupole time-of-flight tandem mass spectrometry methods were employed. Twenty seven compounds were identified and 11 of them, including eight prenylflavonoids and three other types of flavonoids, were further quantified. The antioxidant activity of E. koreanum was evaluated by the 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl free radical scavenging method. The results showed that content of the eight prenylflavonoids exhibited significant variations after different drying processes, especially icariin and baohuoside I. The variation tendency of antioxidant activity was positively correlated with the content of total flavonoid, afzelin and icariin. © 2017

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