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J Ginseng Res. 2013 Jul;37(3):332-40. doi: 10.5142/jgr.2013.37.332.

The improvement of ginsenoside accumulation in Panax ginseng as a result of γ-irradiation.

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Advanced Radiation Technology Institute, Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, Jeongeup 580-185, Korea.


In this study, gamma rays were used to irradiate embryogenic calli induced from cotyledon explants of Panax ginseng Meyer. After the embryogenic calli were irradiated, they were transferred to adventitious roots using an induction medium; next, mutated adventitious root (MAR) lines with a high frequency of adventitious root formations were selected. Two MAR lines (MAR 5-2 and MAR 5-9) from the calli treated with 50 Gy of gamma rays were cultured on an NH4NO3-free Murashige and Skoog medium with indole-3-butyric acid 3 mg/L. The expression of genes related to ginsenoside biosynthesis was analyzed using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction with RNA prepared from native ginseng (NG), non-irradiated adventitious root (NAR) and 2 MAR lines. The expression of the squalene epoxidase and dammarenediol synthase genes was increased in the MAR 5-2 line, whereas the phytosterol synthase was increased in the MAR 5-9 line. The content and pattern of major ginsenosides (Rb1, Rb2, Rc, Rd, Re, Rf, and Rg1) were analyzed in the NG, NAR, and 2 MAR lines (MAR 5-2 and MAR 5-9) using TLC and HPLC. In the TLC analysis, the ginsenoside patterns in the NG, NAR, and 2 MAR lines were similar; in contrast, the MAR 5-9 line showed strong bands of primary ginsenosides. In the HPLC analysis, compared with the NG, one new type of ginsenoside was observed in the NAR and 2 MAR lines, and another new type of ginsenoside was observed in the 2 MAR lines irradiated with gamma rays. The ginsenoside content of the MAR 5-9 line was significantly greater in comparison to the NG.


Gamma irradiation; Ginsenoside; HPLC; Panax ginseng; TLC

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