Transformation of Lettuce with rol ABC Genes: Extracts Show Enhanced Antioxidant, Analgesic, Anti-Inflammatory, Antidepressant, and Anticoagulant Activities in Rats


Lettuce is an edible crop that is well known for dietary and antioxidant benefits. The present study was conducted to investigate the effects of rol ABC genes on antioxidant and medicinal potential of lettuce by Agrobacterium-mediated transformation. Transgene integration and expression was confirmed through PCR and real-time RT-PCR, respectively. The transformed plants showed 91–102 % increase in total phenolic contents and 53–65 % increase in total flavonoid contents compared to untransformed plants. Total antioxidant capacity and total reducing power increased up to 112 and 133 % in transformed plants, respectively. Results of DPPH assay showed maximum 51 % increase, and lipid peroxidation assay exhibited 20 % increase in antioxidant activity of transformed plants compared to controls. Different in vivo assays were carried out in rats. The transgenic plants showed up to 80 % inhibition in both hot plate analgesic assay and carrageenan-induced hind paw edema test, while untransformed plants showed only 45 % inhibition. Antidepressant and anticoagulant potential of transformed plants was also significantly enhanced compared to untransformed plants. Taken together, the present work highlights the use of rol genes to enhance the secondary metabolite production in lettuce and improve its analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, and anticoagulatory properties.

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HI acknowledges the Higher Education Commission (HEC), Islamabad, Pakistan, for provision of the scholarship during the study.

Authors’ Contributions

All authors contributed to the work. BM conceived the study design and supervised the study. MTW contributed in the study design and transformation. HI and ED conducted transformation and assays. All authors drafted the manuscript and approved the final version.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Bushra Mirza.

Ethics declarations

The study design was approved by the Institutional Animal Ethics Committee, and all provisions were carried to minimize animal sufferings.

Competing Interests

The scholarship was provided to HI by the Higher Education Commission (HEC), Pakistan, to conduct the study. The funding body has no role in study design, collection, analysis, interpretation of data, and writing of the manuscript and in the decision to submit the manuscript for publication.

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Ismail, H., Dilshad, E., Waheed, M.T. et al. Transformation of Lettuce with rol ABC Genes: Extracts Show Enhanced Antioxidant, Analgesic, Anti-Inflammatory, Antidepressant, and Anticoagulant Activities in Rats. Appl Biochem Biotechnol 181, 1179–1198 (2017).

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  • Lactuca sativa
  • rol genes
  • Analgesic
  • Antidepressant
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antioxidants
  • Anticoagulant