Plant Cell Reports

, Volume 24, Issue 11, pp 677–682 | Cite as

Ajmalicine production in methyl jasmonate-induced Catharanthus roseus cell cultures depends on Ca2+ level

  • Carolyn W. T. Lee-ParsonsEmail author
  • Seda Ertürk
Physiology and Biochemistry


Cytosolic Ca2+ and jasmonate mediate signals that induce defense responses in plants. In this study, the interaction between Ca2+ and methyl jasmonate (MJ) in modulating defense responses was investigated by monitoring ajmalicine production in Catharanthus roseus suspension cultures. C. roseus suspensions were treated with nine combinations of CaCl2 (3, 23, and 43 mM) and MJ (0, 10, and 100 μM) on day 6 of growth. Increased Ca2+ influx through the addition of extracellular CaCl2 suppressed ajmalicine production in MJ-induced cultures. The highest ajmalicine production (4.75 mg/l) was observed when cells were treated with a low level of calcium (3 mM) combined with a high level of MJ (100 μM). In the presence of 3 mM CaCl2 in the medium, the addition of Ca2+ chelator EGTA (1, 2.5, and 5 mM) or Ca2+ channel blocker verapamil (1, 10, and 50 μM) to MJ-induced (100 μM) cultures on day 6 also inhibited ajmalicine production at higher levels of the Ca2+ inhibitors. Hence, ajmalicine production in MJ-induced C. roseus cultures depended on the intracellular Ca2+ concentration and a low extracellular Ca2+ concentration (3 mM) enhanced MJ-induced ajmalicine production.


Ajmalicine Calcium Catharanthus roseus Methyl jasmonate Signal transduction 



This work was supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF-CAREER, Grant No. BES-0134511). We would like to thank Dr. Robert Verpoorte (University of Leiden, The Netherlands) for the C. roseus cultures and Pik Leng Wong for her insightful review of this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Chemical Engineering Department, 342 Snell Engineering Center360 Huntington Avenue, Northeastern UniversityBostonUSA

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