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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Griffin, Georgia » Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #313699

Research Project: Conservation, Characterization, and Evaluation of Plant Genetic Resources and Associated Information

Location: Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit

Title: Review of traditional and non-traditional medicinal genetic resources in the USDA, ARS, PGRCU collection evaluated for flavonoid concentrations and anthocyanin indexes

Author
item Morris, John - Brad
item Wang, Ming
item Tonnis, Brandon

Submitted to: Austin Food Sciences
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/4/2016
Publication Date: 4/7/2016
Citation: Morris, J.B., Wang, M.L., Tonnis, B.D. 2016. Review of traditional and non-traditional medicinal genetic resources in the USDA, ARS, PGRCU collection evaluated for flavonoid concentrations and anthocyanin indexes. Austin Food Sciences. 1(2):1007.

Interpretive Summary: Several species in the USDA, ARS, PGRCU are used as forages, food, and in health teas. They may also contain valuable medicinal chemicals for fighting cancer and other health problems. Sixty seven velvetleaf and Desmodium samples were grown in the field, but 23 roselle and T. labialis samples were grown in the greenhouse from 2009-2013. This review article reports variability among these samples for several flavonoids and anthocyanin indexes. Flavonoids ranged from 0 to 4 mg/g for velvetleaf and T. labialis samples. Desmodium and roselle samples contained flavonoids ranging from 0 to 1925 µg/g. Velvetleaf samples also showed anthocyanin indexes ranging from 8 to 9. These samples will provide scientists with sources of high amounts of flavonoids and anthocyanin indexes.

Technical Abstract: Non-traditional medicinal species include velvetleaf (Abutilon theophrasti Medik.), Desmodium species, Termanus labialis (L.f.) Spreng. and the traditional species consists of roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa L.). There is a need to identify plant sources of flavonoids and anthocyanins since they have shown anti-cancer activities in humans. Therefore, fruit and leaves from several accessions of velvetleaf, seeds from D. discolor Vogel, D. incanum (G. Mey) D.C., D. intortum (Mill.) Urb., D. sandwicense E. Mey., D. tortuosum (Sw.) D.C., calyces from roselle, and seeds from T. labialis accessions in the USDA, ARS, PGRCU genetic resource collection could be sources of myricetin, quercetin, kaempferol, isorhamnetin, luteolin, apigenin, and anthocyanins. The objectives of this review article are to report some medicinal plant research progress for flavonoid and anthocyanin index variability among these species from several countries of origin. Leaves, fruits and seeds from greenhouse or field grown plants from these species were evaluated. Reverse-phase high performance liquid chromatography using an Agilent 1100 was used for analyzing flavonoids. An Opti Sciences CCM-200 meter was converted to a hand-held anthocyanin index meter. The velvetleaf accessions from China, Asia, the former Soviet Union, and Japan produced leaves with the highest mean anthocyanin index value (9, *P = 0.05). However the Japanese and African accessions produced the highest mean quercetin and kaempferol values in their leaves (4 mg g-1 and 2 mg g-1, *P = 0.05, respectively). The Desmodium accessions produced significantly greater concentrations of all flavonoids (*P = 0.05, **P = 0.01, and ***P = 0.001) than all of the D. incanum controls over two years. Calyces in two roselle accessions (30 and 31) produced significantly more myricetin among accessions than all other flavonoids (1436-1925 µg g-1, ***P < 0.0001). The African T. labialis accessions produced more quercetin (mean of 1.8 mg g-1, ***P < 0.0001) than the accessions from the Dominican Republic and Virgin Islands. These species and accessions could be used to develop superior cultivars for use as nutraceuticals, functional foods, and phytopharmaceuticals.