Plant tissue culture and production of triterpenoids from medicinal plants azadirachta indicaa . Juss. and lantana cama L.

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Medicinal plants are indispensible to human health. From times immemorial, the therapeutic benefits offered by these plants have been exploited by the common people and medical professionals alike. This is the reason why most of them have made their ways to scientific laboratories throughout the world as their large scale production and enhancements of their bioactive constituents have become a matter of fascination and interest to the scientists worldwide. Azadirachta indica A. Juss. (commonly known as Neem), an evergreen tropical tree of family Meliaceae, is one of the most fascinating trees of Asian subcontinent. It has many important medicinal, agrochemical and economic uses to its credit. Today, due to its remarkable biopesticidal properties shown by azadirachtin and other related triterpenoids, the tree has attained global importance. Though this property is not unique to neem, it holds a distinction as it provides a highly effective antifeedant, nontoxic and environment-friendly means of controlling or eliminating insect pests. Due to commercial potential and renewed worldwide research interest, the tree has now been introduced to other regions of the globe including Africa, South America and Australia. In spite of having valued properties, improvement of Neem by conventional methods is very limited owing to its highly heterozygous nature, long reproductive cycle and recalcitrant and poor seed yield. In this context, it is noteworthy that, studies utilizing gametophytic cells are in infancy, in this tree species. In vitro haploid production from gametophytic cells enables the establishment of completely homozygous lines in a shortened time frame compared to conventional methods and has many potential applications in plant improvement to establish inbred lines rapidly and to observe recessive traits. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to establish in vitro androgenic lines of Neem from anthers and check the contribution of these haploid cultures in the production of medicinally important azadirachtin, a tetranortriterpenoid, chiefly present in seeds. The presence of compound has been confirmed by chromatographic and spectroscopic techniques. Bioassays carried out further strengthen the aim of this investigation. Lantana camara L., commonly known as Red or Wild Sage, is an evergreen, strong-smelling woody shrub belonging to the family Verbenaceae. About 150 species are known to represent this genus. The plant is a native of tropical America but is now naturalized in many parts of India. All parts of the plant have been used traditionally for several ailments throughout the world. Several triterpenoids, napthaquinones, flavonoids, alkaloids and glycosides isolated from this plant are known to exert diverse biological activities including cytotoxic and anticancer properties. A number of potential uses of Lantana plant have been suggested but none has been exploited on the large scale. There is a wide scope of research on this plant. Owing to the prevalent heterozygosity in this genus and seasonal variation in secondary metabolite content, tissue culture offers a solution through which cell biomass can be raised and important compounds can be harvested from its biomass all the year round unaffected by the seasonal variation. The purpose of large scale production of pharmaceutically important metabolites c...
Supervisor: Rakhi Chaturvedi