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Electronic Journal of Biotechnology
Universidad Católica de Valparaíso
ISSN: 0717-3458
Vol. 16, No. 5, 2013
Bioline Code: ej13049
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

Electronic Journal of Biotechnology, Vol. 16, No. 5, 2013

 en Ethylene treatment improves diosgenin accumulation in in vitro cultures of Dioscorea zingiberensis check for this species in other resources via up-regulation of CAS and HMGR gene expression
Diarra, Sabake T.; He, Ji; Wang, Jianbo & Li, Jiaru


Background: The perennial medicinal herb Dioscorea zingiberensis check for this species in other resources is a very important plant used for steroid drug manufacturing for its high level of diosgenin in rhizome. Although the stimulation of diosgenin accumulation by ethylene has been reported in a few of plant species, its regulation is not yet characterized at the molecular level, the underlying molecular mechanism remains elusive.
Results: In this study, the effects of ethylene on diosgenin biosynthesis in in vitro cultures of D. zingiberensis were described. The results showed that, in samples treated with ethylene at concentration E3 (104 dilution of 40% ethephon), the diosgenin biosynthesis was significantly promoted in comparison with the control samples. Treatment with high concentrations of ethylene had inhibitory effect, whereas with low concentration of the gas elicitor brought about no detectable deleterious effect on the growth rate and diosgenin content of the cultures. The considerable increase of diosgenin level in in vitro cultured Dioscorea zingiberensis by ethylene application is accompanied by the concomitant increase of soluble proteins and chlorophyll content. The gene expressions of cycloartenol synthase and 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase but not of squalene synthase or farnesyl pyrophosphate synthase were up-regulated by applied ethylene.
Conclusions: Our results suggest that ethylene treatment enhanced diosgenin accumulation via up-regulation of the gene expressions of cycloartenol synthase and 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase.

diosgenin; Dioscorea zingiberensis; ethylene; gene expression

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