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Induced-differential changes on lignan and phenolic acid compounds in Linum album hairy roots by fungal extract of Piriformospora indica

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Linum album Kotschy ex Boiss accumulates some secondary metabolites from phenylpropanoid pathway: lignans with antiviral and anticancer properties such as podophyllotoxin (PTOX) and 6-methoxy podophyllotoxin (6MPTOX) and phenolic acids with role in plant defense such as cinnamic, coumaric, caffeic, ferulic acid and salicylic acid (SA). In this research, profiles of lignan and phenolic compounds of L. album hairy roots exposed to mycelium extract of Piriformospora indica were investigated. The mycelium extracts 1 % (v/v) reduce the hairy roots growth, while 24 h after the treatment PTOX and 6MPTOX production were stimulated reaching a maximum 91.019 µg g−1 and 11.54 mg g−1 dry weight (DW), respectively. For lariciresinol, the greatest amount was seen 24 h after the elicitation, about 157.3 µg g−1 DW, 1.6 times more than the control. P. indica induced the highest levels of phenols and flavonoids at 72 h and flavonol at 48 h after elicitation in the hairy roots; 422.69, 15.41 and 15.14 µg g−1 DW, respectively. Moreover, the content of phenolic acids such as; cinnamic, coumaric, caffeic and ferulic acid significantly increased in treated hairy roots after 12 h, compared to the control. A moderate increase in SA content in hairy roots exposed to mycelium extract was observed within 12 h after exposure to the elicitor. Also, fungal extract effects were followed by increasing in phenylalanine ammonia-lyase (PAL) activity which peaked at 24 h by 1.37-fold greater than the control. The enhancing effect of fungal elicitor on lignans production was correlated with the increased in PAL activity and phenolic acids contents.

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Dry weight


Electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry




Phenylalanine ammonia-lyase




6-methoxy podophyllotoxin


Salicylic acid


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The research is financed by grant from Iran National Science Foundation (No. 89002108), and by Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran.

Authors Contribution

This research paper was accomplished with the collaboration of authors. Hannaneh Tashackori performed the experiments, analyzed data and wrote the manuscript. Mohsen Sharifi designed the study, supervised the study and wrote the manuscript. Najmeh Ahmadian Chashmi established hairy root cultures and advised the study. Naser Safaei provided fungi Piriformospora indica and advised the study. Mehrdad Behmanesh advised the study and edited the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Mohsen Sharifi.

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Tashackori, H., Sharifi, M., Ahmadian Chashmi, N. et al. Induced-differential changes on lignan and phenolic acid compounds in Linum album hairy roots by fungal extract of Piriformospora indica . Plant Cell Tiss Organ Cult 127, 187–194 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11240-016-1041-2

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  • Hairy root
  • Lignan
  • Linum album
  • Piriformospora indica
  • Phenolic acid