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Crop Biotech Update

Rol Genes Enhance Production of Antioxidants in Artemisia carvifolia

June 8, 2016

The secondary metabolites of the Artemisia genus are known for their therapeutic properties. However, these plants yield low amounts of these important metabolites. Researchers from Quaid-i-Azam University in Pakistan and The University of Barcelona in Spain aimed to enhance the yield of these compounds in Artemisia carvifolia Buch.

High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis was performed to detect the antioxidants. To increase flavonoid content, Rol gene transgenics of A. carvifolia were developed. Two genes of the flavonoid biosynthetic pathway, phenylalanine ammonia-lyase and chalcone synthase, were also studied.

HPLC analysis of wild-type A. carvifolia revealed the presence of flavonoids such as caffeic acid, quercetin, isoquercetin and rutin. Compared to the wild-type plants, flavonoid levels increased in rol B and rol C transgenics. Among the transgenic plants, those with rol B were slightly more active than the rol C-transformants.

The study showed the effectiveness of rol genes in inducing production of plant secondary metabolites as well as provided insight into the dynamics of flavonoid accumulation.

For more information, read the full article in BMC Plant Biology.