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The aim of the presented study was to develop a simple, high-throughput analytical procedure to indicate volatile samples (essential oils and natural aromas commonly used in pharmaceutical and food industry), as well as individual compounds/group of compounds possessing free radical scavenging and/or acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitory activity (one or both of the aforementioned properties). First, simple “dot-blot” tests were proposed to pinpoint the samples with the aforementioned activities. Some of those which gave positive results were passed to further analyses by means of low-temperature thin-layer chromatography (TLC). The comparison of the results obtained on different adsorbents led to a conclusion that TLC-AChE inhibition diazotization test should be performed on plates with polar coatings. The hypothesis for the observed weak AChE inhibitory activity on RP-18W plates, when compared to other adsorbents, is also proposed for further verification. The application of these procedures revealed that essential oils obtained from Rosmarinus officinalis, Lavandula officinalis, and Melissa officinalis contain substances with both direct antioxidant and AChE inhibitory activities.

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