|Aftab, Tariq -|
|Khan, Masroor -|
Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: September 19, 2013
Publication Date: December 16, 2013
Citation: Aftab, T., Khan, M.M., Ferreira, J.F. 2013. Effect of mineral nutrition, growth regulators, and environmental stresses on biomass production and artemisinin concentration of Artemisia annua (L.). In: Aftab, T, Ferreira, J.F.S., Khan, M.M.A., Naeem, A., editors. Artemisia annuaa-pharmacology and biotechnology. Heidelberg, Germany:Springer. p. 157-172. Technical Abstract: Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease caused by different species of Plasmodium. It is the world’s most severe parasitic infection and kills almost two million people a year, afflicting more than one-third of the global population. The burden of malaria has increased by the worldwide spread of multi-drug-resistant Plasmodium falciparum. Artemisia annua L. has been used for centuries in Chinese traditional medicine for the treatment for fever and malaria and is the only commercial source of artemisinin, a rare sesquiterpene lactone that is the only safe alternative therapy against multi-drug-resistant malaria. Because the chemical synthesis of artemisinin is very costly, the plant remains the only viable source of artemisinin for pharmacological use. Therefore, the enhanced production of artemisinin by the whole plant is highly desirable. Although artemisinin production a (in planta) is controlled mostly by genetic factors, the plant reacts to certain abiotic stresses by increasing artemisinin concentration. In the past 15 years, selection has increased artemisinin concentration in the plant from 0.3–0.5 % (g/100 g) to 1.0–1.8 %. However, artemisinin increase is still possible by applying selected stresses to the plant. In the present chapter, we are reviewing the various factors that affect biomass and artemisinin production of A. annua.