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J Biosci Bioeng. 2000;90(6):648-53.

Enhancement of growth and coumarin production in hairy root cultures of witloof chicory (Cichorium intybus Lucknow local) under the influence of fungal elicitors.

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Department of Plant Cell Biotechnology, Central Food Technological Research Institute, Mysore 570 013, India.


Studies were conducted to determine the possible production of coumarins in hairy root cultures of Cichorium intybus Lucknow local under the influence of microbial agents. Pythium aphanidermatum and Phytopthora parasitica var. nicotiana were cultured and their mycelial and medium filtrate were used for the elicitation of coumarin production. The media filtrate of P. parasitica at 1.0% v/v added to the MS basal medium led to the maximum growth of hairy roots of C. intybus, which was 1.57-fold higher than the untreated control on the 28th day of culture, along with maximum esculin and esculetin yields which were 4.06- and 3.71-fold higher than the control on the 28th day. The yields of esculin and esculetin in hairy root cultures of chicory strongly correlated with growth. To check the effect of these fungal elicitors on endogenous polyamine metabolism, titers of total endogenous polyamines were analyzed. It was confirmed that the media filtrate of P. parasitica at 1.0% v/v concentration resulted in maximum accumulation of total endogenous polyamines, wherein endogenous spermine titers were found to be maximum as compared to endogenous spermidine and putrescine titers on the 28th day. Total endogenous spermine in the case of 1.0% MF v/v P. parasitica was 1.3-fold higher than that of the control on the 28th day of culture. Maximum growth index with greater length of primary root (17.61+/-0.18 cm) and greater number of secondary and tertiary roots was recorded for the medium filtrate of P. parasitica at 1.0% v/v concentration. This study also provided an insight into the morphological changes in terms of branching patterns, occurring in roots under the influence of these fungal elicitors.


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