In this study the antioxidant activity of absolute ethanol, 50 % ethanol and water extracts of two species of seaweeds, namely Fucus serratus and Polysiphonia fucoides, were evaluated both in in vitro assays and in 5 % fish oil-in-water (o/w) emulsions. The 50 % ethanolic extracts of P. fucoides showed higher antioxidant activity both in in vitro assays and in 5 % oil-in-water emulsion in the presence or absence of iron. In spite of the higher phenolic content and very good antioxidant activity in some of the in vitro assays, the absolute ethanol extracts of both the species showed a pro-oxidative tendency in 5 % fish oil-in-water emulsion in the presence or absence of iron. In order to investigate the reason for the higher antioxidant activity of 50 % ethanolic extracts of P. fucoides, these extracts were further fractionated into polyphenol-rich, protein-rich, polysaccharide-rich and low-molecular-weight fractions. These fractions were tested both in in vitro and in 5 % oil-in-water emulsions. The results of the present study showed that the main effect was due to the phenolic compounds. In conclusion, the 50 % ethanolic extracts of P. fucoides can be a potential source of natural antioxidants as these extracts have antioxidant activities similar to those of synthetic antioxidants such as BHT.
Journal of the American Oil Chemists' Society, 2015, Vol 92, Issue 4, p. 571-587