State of antioxidant systems and ginsenoside contents in the leaves of Panax ginseng in a natural habitat and an artificial plantation

  • Yury N. ShkrylEmail author
  • Galina N. Veremeychik
  • Tatiana V. Avramenko
  • Viacheslav V. Makhankov
  • Dmitry V. Bulgakov
  • Yulia A. Yugay
  • Olga L. Burundukova
  • Tamara I. Muzarok
  • Victor P. Bulgakov
  • Yury N. Zhuravlev
Original Article


Native Panax ginseng Meyer plants are now quite rare in their natural environment, and thus, artificial plantations are used for commercial purposes. However, ginseng plantations are frequently exposed to abiotic and biotic stress stimuli, which can decrease biomass accumulation and cause plants to wither and die. The antioxidant systems of the plants play a vital role in their defense mechanism against adverse stresses through maintaining the balance between reactive oxygen species generation and detoxification. Here, the adaptability of wild and cultivated P. ginseng was compared with respect to the antioxidant enzyme activities and gene expression, lipid peroxidation, ratio of reduced-to-oxidized glutathione, and ginsenoside content. Several new genes for antioxidant enzymes, including PgApx1, PgApx2, PgCSD2, PgCSD3, PgMSD1, PgGR1, PgPrx2, and PgPrx3, were identified, and their relative expression levels were determined together with previously characterized genes (PgCSD1, PgCat1, and PgPrx1). The relative transcription of PgMSD1 was higher in wild ginseng, whereas PgApx2 was overexpressed in cultivated plants. Expression of other antioxidant genes remained constant. The activity of superoxide dismutase, class III peroxidase, and glutathione reductase was significantly decreased in cultivated P. ginseng, whereas the activity of ascorbate peroxidase and catalase was not changed. Moreover, oxidative stress markers such as malondialdehyde concentration, the ratio of reduced-to-oxidized glutathione, and Rg-type ginsenosides content were elevated in cultivated ginseng plants. Our results indicate that P. ginseng plants grown in their natural habitat or artificial plantations have different antioxidative statuses. The process of domestication appears to have reduced the antioxidant defense system of ginseng.


Panax ginseng Ginsenosides Reactive oxygen species Antioxidant enzymes 



Ascorbate peroxidase




Glutathione reductase


Reduced/oxidized glutathione


Class III peroxidase


Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase


Mn superoxide dismutase



Financial support was provided by the Far East Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences (15-I-6-029) for determination of ginsenoside content.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

All authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Supplementary material

11738_2018_2699_MOESM1_ESM.doc (43 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 43 KB)
11738_2018_2699_MOESM2_ESM.docx (18 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (DOCX 17 KB)


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Copyright information

© Franciszek Górski Institute of Plant Physiology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yury N. Shkryl
    • 1
    • 3
    Email author
  • Galina N. Veremeychik
    • 1
  • Tatiana V. Avramenko
    • 1
  • Viacheslav V. Makhankov
    • 2
  • Dmitry V. Bulgakov
    • 1
  • Yulia A. Yugay
    • 1
  • Olga L. Burundukova
    • 1
  • Tamara I. Muzarok
    • 1
  • Victor P. Bulgakov
    • 1
    • 3
  • Yury N. Zhuravlev
    • 1
  1. 1.Federal Scientific Center of the East Asia Terrestrial Biodiversity of the Far East Branch of Russian Academy of SciencesVladivostokRussia
  2. 2.G.B. Elyakov Pacific Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry of the Far East Branch of Russian Academy of SciencesVladivostokRussia
  3. 3.Far Eastern Federal UniversityVladivostokRussia

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