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Kombucha is a fermented black tea that has been hypothesized to provide many health benefits. The exact origin of these benefits, however, is continually being investigated. This study aims to identify the various active compound produced in the biotransformation of the metabolites during the fermentation process of the tea beverage, as well as quantify functions such as antioxidant capacity. Hydrophilic and hydrophobic liquid-liquid extractions were performed on a filtered sample of GT’s Organic Raw Kombucha® using acetonitrile and ethyl acetate. Ferric reducing/antioxidant power (FRAP) assays were run on both the Kombucha tea and the extracts to determine their antioxidant capacity. The Kombucha tea, acetonitrile extract, and ethyl acetate extract were found to have FRAP values of 146.9, 102.7, and 71.04, respectively. The high retention of FRAP in the acetonitrile extract gives evidence that a polar hydrophobic molecule is functioning as an antioxidant in the Kombucha tea. Antioxidant capacity was further tracked using a variety of chromatographic techniques including the use of silica gel and C-18 functionalized silica flash chromatographies, as well as reverse-phase C-18 HPLC. These studies aim to further purify and characterize the compounds responsible for antioxidant capacity.

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Francis Mann



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