Plant cell cultures have been industrially used for the synthesis of secondary metabolites. Different elicitors, [jasmonic acid (JA), salicylic acid (SA) and ethephone (E)] and precursors [shicimic acid (SH) and phenylalanine (PHE)] were independently used to enhance the synthesis of phenolics in suspension cultures of Vitis viniferac.v. Muscat de Frontignan followed by chemical analysis with high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Differences between the treated and untreated in vitro grape cultures were confirmed statistically. On day 2, JA, SA and SH significantly increased phenolic acid contents with E on day 4 (p < 0.05). The grape cells treated with SA, E, SH, and PHE increased biomass whereas JA led to decreases over time. From the chemical analysis of V. vinifera suspension cell cultures, two major resveratrol derivatives; 3-O-glucosyl-resveratrol and 4-(3,5-dihydroxyphenyl)-phenol were in high concentrations after treatment most especially with JA. These results show that elicitors (JA, SA, and E) and the precursor SH can be economically used to enhance the synthesis of phenolic compounds in V. vinifera within a very short time lapse. Furthermore, these enhancers could be used to target the rapid extraction of medicinally important resveratrols for pharmaceutical purposes.
Key words: Vitis vinifera, phenolic acids, resveratrol, elicitors, precursors
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