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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2014, Article ID 609649, 10 pages
Research Article

Effects of Polysaccharide Elicitors on Secondary Metabolite Production and Antioxidant Response in Hypericum perforatum L. Shoot Cultures

1Laboratoire de Biologie des Ligneux et des Grandes Cultures, UPRES EA 1207, UFR-Faculté des Sciences, Université d’Orléans, rue de Chartres, BP 6759, 45067 Orléans Cedex 2, France
2Institute of Biology, Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, University of Ss. Cyril and Methodius, P.O. Box 162, 1000 Skopje, Macedonia

Received 30 July 2014; Revised 26 November 2014; Accepted 27 November 2014; Published 11 December 2014

Academic Editor: Devanand P. Fulzele

Copyright © 2014 Sonja Gadzovska Simic 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.


The effects of polysaccharide elicitors such as chitin, pectin, and dextran on the production of phenylpropanoids (phenolics and flavonoids) and naphtodianthrones (hypericin and pseudohypericin) in Hypericum perforatum shoot cultures were studied. Nonenzymatic antioxidant properties (NEAOP) and peroxidase (POD) activity were also observed in shoot extracts. The activities of phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL) and chalcone-flavanone isomerase (CHFI) were monitored to estimate channeling in phenylpropanoid/flavonoid pathways of elicited shoot cultures. A significant suppression of the production of total phenolics and flavonoids was observed in elicited shoots from day 14 to day 21 of postelicitation. This inhibition of phenylpropanoid production was probably due to the decrease in CHFI activity in elicited shoots. Pectin and dextran promoted accumulation of naphtodianthrones, particularly pseudohypericin, within 21 days of postelicitation. The enhanced accumulation of naphtodianthrones was positively correlated with an increase of PAL activity in elicited shoots. All tested elicitors induced NEAOP at day 7, while chitin and pectin showed increase in POD activity within the entire period of postelicitation. The POD activity was in significantly positive correlation with flavonoid and hypericin contents, suggesting a strong perturbation of the cell redox system and activation of defense responses in polysaccharide-elicited H. perforatum shoot cultures.