Abstract

QUALITATIVE AND QUANTITATIVE ASSESSMENT OF MINERAL ELEMENTS IN THE LEAVES OF CORCHORUS FASCICULARIS AND CORCHORUS OLITORIUS HARVESTED IN CAMEROON

Author(s): ROBERT M. NEMBA*, ALPHONSE EMADAK, GILBERT C. MOUZONG and CHRISTIANE E. NEMBA

Corchorus Olitorius and Corchorus Fascicularis are two species of Tiliaceae plants encountered in the humid forest zones of the sub-Saharan Africa. Both species exist in Cameroon and are cultivated as legumes and exploited by the local populations for food and medical issues. The present survey, achieved in two main sites of production called Ezazou and Nkolbisson in the suburban area of Yaoundé capital city of Cameroon, consists in valuing the mineral content of the leaves of these plants in one hand and to discuss the differences of concentrations within species on the other hand. The analyses performed by Energy Dispersive X-Ray Fluorescence (EDXRF) reveal in both species a similar uptake of the following mineral elements: K, Ca, P, Mg, Cl, Na, Al, Fe, Mn, Sr, Ni, Cu, Br, Cd, Pb, Se, Th, Hg, Cr and V. These elements are partitioned in three groups. The first group includes K, Ca, P, Mg and Cl, which totalize a global concentration of more than 98% of the total concentration of the elements previously enumerated. The second group totalizes less than 1.8% of the total mineral uptake and consists of Na, Al, Fe, Mn, Sr, Rb, Ni, Cu, Ba and Br. The third group of mineral constituents includes Cd, Pb, Se, Th, Hg, Cr and V, which totalize less than 0.2% of the total mineral uptake. It is to be noticed that in both sites, Na is three times more concentrated in the samples of Corchorus Fascicularis in relation to those of Corchorus Olitorius while K, Ca, P, Mg and Cl are invariably the major mineral constituents of these two plant species


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