A novel HPLC-UV method has been developed for the fingerprint analysis of the steroidal saponins in the rhizomes of three Ruscus species ( Ruscus aculeatus , Ruscus hypoglossum and Ruscus colchicus) . Saponins were identified by HPLC-ESI-MS. During the study a new major saponin was detected in the rhizomes of R. hypoglossum and R. colchicus . The structure of the new compound was defined as 1- O -[α- l -rhamnopyranosyl-(1→2)-6- O -acetyl-β- d -galactopyranosyl]-1β,3β,22ξ,26-tetrahydroxy-furost-5(6)- en -26- O -β- d -glucopyranoside ( 8 ) by spectral analysis.
Maple Syrup Urine Disease (MSUD) is a condition that results from improper metabolism of branched-chain amino acids. The aromatic in fenugreek, sotolon, may be used as a diagnostic criteria for MSUD as it exists in the urine of those persons with this metabolic defect and gives the characteristic sweet-scent.  It normally does not appear in healthy person's urine due to no dietary intake, but may appear in those who drink or consume fenugreek, leading to a false diagnosis.  Maternal consumption of sotolon can also transfer into the baby after birth, and cause trans-generational false diagnosis. 
This project was financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundations of China (grant No. 81102805, 81373978), the Open Projects Program of the Key Laboratory of Tibetan Medicine Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences (grant No. 2014-TMR-01), the Innovative Research Team in TCM Material Foundation and Key Preparation Technology (grant No. 2012KCT-20), the Innovation Projects of Science and Technology in Shaanxi Province (grant No. 2011KTCQ03-02, 2013KTCQ03-14), and the Key Program of Shaanxi University of Chinese Medicine (grant No. 2015PY09).