A comparative evaluation of biological activities and bioactive compounds of the seagrasses <i>Zostera marina</i> and <i>Zostera noltei</i> from southern Portugal

<div><p>This work assessed the antioxidant potential, acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibition and the <i>in vitro</i> cytotoxic activity of extracts of the seagrasses <i>Zostera marina</i> and <i>Zostera noltei</i> collected from southern Portugal. The total phenolic contents (TPCs), the rosmarinic acid (RA) concentration (HPLC/DAD) and the fatty acid (FA) profile (GC/MS) are also described. <i>Z. marina</i> had the highest TPC, radical scavenging activity against DPPH radicals and copper chelating activity. <i>Z. noltei</i> had metal chelation capacity to copper and iron ions. None of the species was able to inhibit AChE. Both seagrasses had high levels of polyunsaturated FAs. <i>Z. marina</i> significantly and selectively reduced the viability of tumorous neuronal cells. <i>Z. noltei</i> was highly toxic for the three cell lines tested and was selective against hepatocarcinoma cells at the concentration of 100 μg/mL. RA was the main compound identified in <i>Z. marina</i>, but not in <i>Z. noltei</i>.</p></div>