A fermented beverage, Kanji, prepared from roots of Daucus carota L. subsp. sativus (Hoffm.) Arcang. var. vavilovii Mazk. (Apiaceae), despite long usage history has not been investigated for analytical studies and biological activities. Therefore, the present study aimed to investigate different types of Kanji samples and various types of extracts/fractions of root of the plant for a number of analytical studies and in vitro antioxidant activities. The Kanji sample, Lab-made Kanji, having better analytical and biological profile was further investigated for preliminary clinical studies. The analytical studies indicated that Lab-made Kanji was having comparatively higher contents of phytochemicals than that of the commercial Kanji samples, different types of extracts and fractions (P < 0.05). All the Kanji samples and aqueous and ethanol extracts of fresh roots exhibited comparable antioxidant activities in DPPH assay (52.20 - 54.19%) that were higher than that of methanol extract (48.78%) of dried roots. The antiradical powers (1/ EC50) of Lab-made Kanji and aqueous extract were found to be higher than that of the ethanol and methanol extracts. In β-carotene linoleate assay, the Kanji samples showed higher activity than that of the methanol extract, but comparable to that of the vitamin-E and butylated hydroxyl anisole (BHA) (P < 0.05). A preliminary clinical evaluation indicated that Kanji has no harmful effect on blood components, liver function and serum lipid profile. The results of the present study indicate that Kanji is an effective antioxidant beverage.

Abida Latif, Khalid Hussain, Nadeem Irfan Bukhari, Sabiha Karim, Amjad Hussain, Furqan Khurshid Hashmi, Rukhsana Sher, Syed Saeed-Ul-Hassan and Bashir Ahmad