Salvia officinalis is well studied and popular medicinal plant containing toxic thujones, rather limited phytochemical and pharmacological studies have been performed on others Salvia spp. The aim of the study was to perform phytochemical and chemotaxonomic studies of Salvia genus species (n = 16) from Ukraine to identify the most promising species for the pharmaceutical industry. The content of essential oils from the leaves of 16 Salvia spp. has been studied by GC/MS and polyphenols by HPLC/MS, chemotaxonomic study has been performed by calculation of coefficients of occurrence, originality and pair affinity. The Salvia spp. is characterized by the presence of monoterpenoids, hydroxycinnamic acids derivatives of caffeic acid, and flavonoids derivatives of luteolin and apigenin. The highest content of essential oil is observed in the leaves of S. officinalis, S. grandiflora and S. scabiosifolia (1.41-1.85%). The highest amount of hydroxycinnamic acids is in the leaves of S. pratensis, S. illuminata, S. austriaca and S. verticillata; the highest content of flavonoids and phenolic compounds is found in the leaves of S. grandiflora, S. pratensis, S. illuminata, S. nemorosa, S. pendula, S. sylvestris, S. nutans, S. verticillata and S. cernua. The chemical profile of the genus has been determined; it is characterized by terpenoids such as α- and β-pinene, camphane derivatives (camphene, camphor and borneol), p-cymene, 1,8-cineol, limonene, phenolic compounds (caffeic and rosmarinic acids), and flavonoids (cynaroside, cosmosiin, hispidulin, cirsimaritin). Rather high concentration of toxic - and -thujone is thypical only in the essential oil of S. officinalis (33.6 and 6.5%, respectively). The most promising species for use in the pharmaceutical industry are S. grandiflora, S. cernua, S. pratensis, S. nemorosa and S. verticillata.
Key words: Sage; Chemotaxonomy; Terpenoids; Polyphenols; GC; HPLC