, Volume 49, Issue 1, pp 24-29,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 13 Nov 2012

The production of ginsenosides in hairy root cultures of American Ginseng, Panax quinquefolium L. and their antimicrobial activity


Panax quinquefolium, American ginseng, is valued for its triterpene saponins, known as ginsenosides. These constituents possess a number of pharmacological properties and hairy root cultures can synthesize similar saponins to those of field-cultivated roots. The antibacterial activity of extracts from three hairy root clones of P. quinquefolium L. was tested against a range of standard bacterial and yeast strains. The agar diffusion method was used to evaluate inhibition of microbial growth at various extract concentrations. Commercial antibiotics were used as positive reference standards to determine the sensitivity of the strains. Susceptibility testing to antibiotics was also tested using the disk diffusion method. The minimal inhibitory concentration values of the extracts, obtained by agar diffusion, ranged from 0.8 to 1.4 mg/ml. The results showed that extracts from hairy root cultures inhibited the growth of bacteria and yeast strains and suggest that they may be useful in the treatment of infections caused by pathogenic microorganisms.

Editor: J. Forster