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Alkaloid formation by habituated and tumorous cell suspension cultures of Catharanthus roseus

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Habituated and tumorous Catharanthus roseus cells grown in the absence of hormones accumulated indole alkaloids. Total alkaloids and alkaloid pattern were the same when cells were cultured in medium without hormones or in alkaloid production medium with and without indole acetic acid. Treatment of cells with Pythium homogenate as elicitor did not increase total alkaloids or change the pattern of alkaloids produced. When either habituated or tumorous cells were grown in 1B5 medium after Gamborg et al (1968) containing 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D), their capacity to accumulate alkaloids decreased with time. The levels of tryptophan decarboxylase (TDC) and strictosidine synthase (SS) specific activities were constant throughout growth except when cells were exposed to 2,4-D in 1B5 medium, where enzyme activities declined in step with the decrease in alkaloid accumulation. Neither habituated nor tumorous cell suspension cultures accumulated vindoline, nor could they be induced to produce this alkaloid by any of the given treatments.

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Correspondence to F. Constabel.

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NRCC No. 27514

Communicated by M. Tabata

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Eilert, U., DeLuca, V., Kurz, W.G.W. et al. Alkaloid formation by habituated and tumorous cell suspension cultures of Catharanthus roseus . Plant Cell Reports 6, 271–274 (1987). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00271996

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  • Acetic Acid
  • Tryptophan
  • Alkaloid
  • Indole
  • Production Medium