The Effect of Enzymatic Pre-Treatment in Agarwood Oil Extraction

Astri Fadhilah Abdul Rahim, Atikah Kadri, Nor Masliyah Harun


Agarwood oil was extracted from a pre-treated agarwood chip soaked in a specific enzyme concentration of 1 %, 3 % and 5 % respectively. The effect of soaking time was also investigated by applying soaking period in the range of 3 to 14 days. Hydrodistillation was carried out using the Clevenger-type apparatus to obtain the essential oil of agarwood chips. Subsequently the quality of the oil and the identification of its oil compounds were analyzed using GC-MS. The morphology of agarwood chips prior to hydrodistillation was characterized using scanning electron microscope (SEM). The SEM results of enzymatic pre-treated sample showed an obvious change in the cell morphology as compared to the sample with standard soaking of 6 days. The highest yield of oil with the amount of 0.125 % is produced from the sample pre-treated with 3 % enzyme concentration as compared to 0.065 % of oil yield from the non-pre-treated sample employing similar soaking days. The GC-MS analysis revealed a total of 335 compounds from all samples of agarwood oil and similar compounds were found in the standard soaking and enzymatic pre-treated samples. Caryophyllene, Gurjunene, and Alloaromadendrene that contributes to the unique odour of agarwood oil are found mostly in all samples. Thus, the enzymatic pre-treatment indicates a comparable yield and oil quality and it is achievable even with a reduced soaking time of 6 days as compared to standard 14 days.


agarwood; essential oil; enzymatic pre-treatment; GC-MS; hydrodistillation extraction.

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