October 09, 2009
Both Chinese ginseng and Korean ginseng are similar plant species and undergo similar handling procedures when harvested and processed for sale. Despite their similarities, Korean ginseng commands a higher price than Chinese ginseng on the open market and is believed to produce different clinical effects than Chinese ginseng. Chinese researchers are now employing new techniques on the two varieties of ginseng to understand their chemical differences. HPLC/UV-based strategies for distinguishing the two types of ginseng have proven to be mostly ineffective due to lack of resolution. Using UltraPerformance liquid chromatography/orthogonal acceleration (oa)–TOF mass spectrometry and exact mass measurement, the authors developed a high-resolution method using multivariate statistical analysis for separating and identifying differences between Chinese ginseng and Korean ginseng at the molecular level.