Bioprocess and Biosystems Engineering

, Volume 41, Issue 11, pp 1665–1677 | Cite as

Influence of silver nanoparticles on the enhancement and transcriptional changes of glucosinolates and phenolic compounds in genetically transformed root cultures of Brassica rapa ssp. rapa

  • Ill-Min Chung
  • Kaliyaperumal Rekha
  • Govindasamy Rajakumar
  • Muthu ThiruvengadamEmail author
Research Paper


Glucosinolates (GSLs) and phenolic compounds (PCs) are biologically active and involved in the defense reaction of plants; these compounds have a beneficial effect on human health. In this study, we described the influence of biologically synthesized silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs) to enhance the phytochemicals (GSLs and PCs), their transcription levels, and their biological activities in genetically transformed root cultures (hairy root cultures) of Brassica rapa. The concentrations of silver and reactive oxygen species (malondialdehyde and hydrogen peroxide) were highly elevated in the Ag NP-elicited hairy roots (HRs). Glucosinolates (glucoallysin, glucobrassicanapin, sinigrin, progoitrin, gluconapin, 4-methoxyglucobrassicin, 4-hydroxyglucobrassicin, glucobrassicin, neoglucobrassicin, and gluconasturtiin) and their transcripts (MYB34, MYB51, MYB28, and MYB29) were significantly enhanced in the Ag NP-elicited HRs. Moreover, the phenolic compounds (flavonols, hydroxybenzoic, and hydroxycinnamic acids) were significantly enriched in the Ag NP-elicited HRs. Total phenolic and flavonoid concentrations and their transcripts (PAL, CHI, and FLS) were higher in the Ag NP-elicited HRs than in the non-elicited HRs. Additionally, biological (antioxidant, antimicrobial, and anticancer) activities were significantly higher in the Ag NP-elicited HRs than in the non-elicited HRs. The Ag NP-elicited HR cultures offered an efficient and promising in vitro method to increase the production of health-promoting bioactive compounds, which may be useful in nutraceutical and pharmaceutical industries.


Gene expression Glucosinolates Hairy root cultures Phenolic compounds Silver nanoparticles 


Ag NPs

Silver nanoparticles






Hairy root cultures


Hairy roots


Individual phenolic compounds


Inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry




Hydrogen peroxide


Thiazolyl blue tetrazolium bromide


Phenolic compounds


Reactive oxygen species


Real-time polymerase chain reaction


Total flavonoid content


Total phenolic content


Ultra-high-pressure liquid chromatography–triple quadrupole mass spectrometry


Ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography



This paper was supported by the KU Research Professor Program of Konkuk University, Seoul, South Korea.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ill-Min Chung
    • 1
  • Kaliyaperumal Rekha
    • 2
  • Govindasamy Rajakumar
    • 1
  • Muthu Thiruvengadam
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Applied Bioscience, College of Life and Environmental SciencesKonkuk UniversitySeoulRepublic of Korea
  2. 2.Department of Environmental and Herbal ScienceTamil UniversityThanjavurIndia

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