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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 934182, 10 pages
Research Article

Effect of Chromium on Antioxidant Potential of Catharanthus roseus Varieties and Production of Their Anticancer Alkaloids: Vincristine and Vinblastine

1Department of Botany, University of Lucknow, Lucknow 226 007, India
2Pharmacognosy & Ethnopharmacology Division, CSIR-National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow 226 001, India

Received 25 April 2013; Revised 11 January 2014; Accepted 18 January 2014; Published 10 March 2014

Academic Editor: Sudhir Sopory

Copyright © 2014 Vartika Rai et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Catharanthus roseus (L.) G. Don, a medicinal plant, has a very important place in the traditional as well as modern pharmaceutical industry. Two common varieties of this plant rosea and alba are named so because of pink and white coloured flowers, respectively. This plant comprises of about 130 terpenoid indole alkaloids and two of them, vincristine and vinblastine, are common anticancer drugs. The effect of chromium (Cr) on enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidant components and on secondary metabolites vincristine and vinblastine was studied under pot culture conditions of both varieties of C. roseus. Antioxidant responses of these varieties were analyzed under 0, 10, 50, and 100 μM chromium (Cr) level in order to investigate the plant’s protective mechanisms against Cr induced oxidative stress. The results indicated that Cr affects all the studied parameters and decreases growth performance. However, vincristine and vinblastine contents were increased under Cr stress. Results are quite encouraging, as this plant shows good antioxidant potential and increased the level of active constituents under Cr stress.