Skip to main content
ARS Home » Southeast Area » Griffin, Georgia » Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #361696

Research Project: Conservation, Characterization, Evaluation, and Distribution of Grain, Oilseed, Vegetable, Subtropical and Tropical Legume, and Warm Season Grass Genetic Resources and Associated Information

Location: Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit

Title: Variability for Sennoside A and B concentrations in eight Senna species

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

Submitted to: Industrial Crops and Products
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/16/2019
Publication Date: 6/28/2019
Publication URL:
Citation: Morris, J.B., Wang, M.L., Tonnis, B.D. 2019. Variability for Sennoside A and B concentrations in eight Senna species. Industrial Crops and Products. 139:111489.

Interpretive Summary: Information about sennoside content variation in Senna species is important knowledge for other scientists to know so that they may use these in the development of new plant types with the sennoside laxative trait. A couple of species reported here show their value for sennoside content and laxative health enhancing uses in humans. Candlebush produced more sennoside A than all other species, and young pods from Alexandrian senna produced the most sennoside B content. These results show that candlebush and Alexandrian senna could be used to develop varieties with high sennoside content.

Technical Abstract: The USDA, ARS, Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Unit curates several Senna species including candlebush [S. alata (L.) Roxb.], Alexandrian senna [S. alexandrina Mill.], S. angulata (Vogel) H.S. Irwin & Barneby, S. covesii (A. Gray) H.S. Irwin & Barneby, S. hirsuta var. hirta H.S. Irwin & Barneby, S. hirsuta var. leptocarpa (Benth.) H.S. Irwin & Barneby, S. occidentalis (L.) Link, and S. uniflora (Mill.) H.S. Irwin & Barneby. The natural products including sennoside A and B are the primary laxative ingredients in many medicinal products. However, it is unknown if sennoside A and B are found in many of these Senna species and at what concentrations. The objective of this study was to evaluate sennoside A and B content from leaves of 14, and pods of 4 accessions including seven Senna species over 2 years and locations. Sample analysis was performed by HPLC on an Agilent 1100 with an auto-sampler and diode array detector. Significant accession and location x accession effects were observed for sennoside A and B. Mean separations revealed that leaves from S. alata produced significantly more sennoside A (8.55 mg/g) than all other species. However, immature pods from S. alexandrina produced the significantly highest sennoside B (16.19 mg/g) content. While this is a preliminary analysis, it provides evidence for higher levels of sennoside A and B in S. alata and S. alexandrina than in S. angulata, S. covesii, S. hirsuta var. hirta, S. hirsuta var. leptocarpa, S. occidentalis, and S. uniflora. These results show that both S. alata and S. alexandrina produced the highest sennoside concentrations. However, additional studies are required to verify sennoside content in other Senna species and organs including Senna pods.