Plant Cell, Tissue and Organ Culture (PCTOC)

, Volume 119, Issue 3, pp 501–509 | Cite as

Effect of a novel aromatic cytokinin derivative on phytochemical levels and antioxidant potential in greenhouse grown Merwilla plumbea

  • Adeyemi O. Aremu
  • Mack Moyo
  • Stephen O. Amoo
  • Jiří Gruz
  • Michaela Šubrtová
  • Lucie Plíhalová
  • Karel Doležal
  • Johannes Van Staden
Original Paper


In an attempt to elucidate the carry-over effect of cytokinins (CKs) on phytochemical and antioxidant activity of acclimatized plants, tissue culture-derived Merwilla plumbea supplemented with three CK types at four (0.25, 0.5, 1 and 2 µM) concentrations were grown for 6 months ex vitro. Phenolic acids including the hydroxybenzoic and hydroxycinnamic acid derivatives in M. plumbea were quantified using ultra performance liquid chromatography while the antioxidant activity was evaluated using oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC). Different concentrations of gallic acid, protocatechuic acid, p-hydroxybenzoic acid and salicylic acid were observed with all the treatments with the exception of non-treated plants. Most phytochemicals (for example, gallic acid, ferulic acid protocatechuic acid and caffeic acid) were highest in plants obtained from 0.25 µM meta-topolin riboside (mTR). Likewise, plants derived from 2 µM mTR had the highest ORAC (684 µmol g−1 trolox equivalents) activity. Bearing in mind that therapeutic effects of medicinal plants are often associated to their phytochemical content, the current results are an indication on how the intricate in vitro environment (CK type and concentration in this case) affects the growth and general physiology of micropropagated plants especially after acclimatization.


Antioxidant Conservation Phenolics Phytohormones Topolins Secondary metabolites 



2,2′-Azobis(2-methylpropionamidine) dihydrochloride


Analysis of variance




Duncan‘s multiple range test


Dry weight


Gallic acid equivalents


Murashige and Skoog medium


meta-Topolin riboside




Oxygen radical absorbance capacity


Photosynthetic photon flux




Trolox equivalents


Ultra performance liquid chromatography



We thank the Claude Leon Foundation and the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa for financial support. The current study was also supported by the Centre of the Region Hana for Biotechnological and Agricultural Research, Palacký University (Olomouc), Czech Republic (Grant No. ED0007/01/01), the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, Czech Republic (Grant L01204 from the National Program of Sustainability) as well as by IGA of Palacký University (grant IGA_PrF_2014006). We thank Mrs Alison Young (UKZN Botanical Garden, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa) and her staff for their assistance in maintaining the greenhouse facilities.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Adeyemi O. Aremu
    • 1
  • Mack Moyo
    • 1
  • Stephen O. Amoo
    • 1
  • Jiří Gruz
    • 2
  • Michaela Šubrtová
    • 2
  • Lucie Plíhalová
    • 2
  • Karel Doležal
    • 2
  • Johannes Van Staden
    • 1
  1. 1.Research Centre for Plant Growth and Development, School of Life SciencesUniversity of KwaZulu-Natal PietermaritzburgScottsvilleSouth Africa
  2. 2.Department of Chemical Biology and Genetics, Centre of the Region Haná for Biotechnological and Agricultural Research, Faculty of SciencePalacký University and Institute of Experimental Botany, Academy of Sciences of Czech RepublicOlomouc-HoliceCzech Republic

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