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J Agric Food Chem. 2017 Aug 2;65(30):6298-6306. doi: 10.1021/acs.jafc.7b00925. Epub 2017 Jul 21.

Authentication Markers for Five Major Panax Species Developed via Comparative Analysis of Complete Chloroplast Genome Sequences.

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Department of Plant Science, Plant Genomics and Breeding Institute, and Research Institute of Agriculture and Life Sciences, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Seoul National University , Seoul, 151-921, Republic of Korea.
Crop Biotechnology Institute/GreenBio Science and Technology, Seoul National University , Pyeongchang 232-916, Republic of Korea.


Ginseng represents a set of high-value medicinal plants of different species: Panax ginseng (Asian ginseng), Panax quinquefolius (American ginseng), Panax notoginseng (Chinese ginseng), Panax japonicus (Bamboo ginseng), and Panax vietnamensis (Vietnamese ginseng). Each species is pharmacologically and economically important, with differences in efficacy and price. Accordingly, an authentication system is needed to combat economically motivated adulteration of Panax products. We conducted comparative analysis of the chloroplast genome sequences of these five species, identifying 34-124 InDels and 141-560 SNPs. Fourteen InDel markers were developed to authenticate the Panax species. Among these, eight were species-unique markers that successfully differentiated one species from the others. We generated at least one species-unique marker for each of the five species, and any of the species can be authenticated by selection among these markers. The markers are reliable, easily detectable, and valuable for applications in the ginseng industry as well as in related research.


Panax species; chloroplast genome; ginseng authentication; molecular markers

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