Environmental Chemistry Letters

, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp 1493–1499 | Cite as

An efficient synthesis of bisenols in water extract of waste onion peel ash

  • Poh Wai ChiaEmail author
  • Ban Soon Lim
  • Fu Siong Julius Yong
  • Seng-Chee Poh
  • Su-Yin Kan
Original Paper


Bisenols and its derivatives are attractive heterocyclic compounds exhibiting a wide range of biological properties, including anticancer, antipyretic and antimicrobial characteristics. Many catalytic systems have been reported to enhance the synthesis of bisenols, but these catalytic systems suffer from several drawbacks, such as the use of external metals, expensive and toxic chemicals. Thus, the development of a greener and efficient catalyst for the synthesis of bisenols is highly sought after. Herein, an improved protocol for the synthesis of bisenols in the water extract of burned-ash of onion peel waste (ash-water extract) as an efficient catalytic system is reported. Upon completion of the reaction, the crude mixture was extracted with ethyl acetate and the ash-water extract was successfully reused for several times in the synthesis of a variety of bisenols. Bisenols were obtained in good to excellent yields (62–94%) by using various benzaldehyde and 4-hydroxycoumarin catalyzed by the ash-water extract. Moreover, all pure products were obtained by precipitation without the need of column purification.


Ash-water extract Onion peel Heterocyclic compounds Bisenols Recyclable catalytic system Bio-waste 



The author would like to acknowledge the talent and publication enhancement-research Grant (TAPE-RG) Universiti Malaysia Terengganu for its research Grant (Vot. No. 55111) and the Universiti Malaysia Terengganu for its research facilities.


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Marine and Environmental SciencesUniversiti Malaysia TerengganuKuala TerengganuMalaysia
  2. 2.Institute of Marine BiotechnologyUniversiti Malaysia TerengganuKuala TerengganuMalaysia
  3. 3.Faculty of Health SciencesUniversiti Sultan Zainal AbidinKuala NerusMalaysia

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