From Plant Extract to a cDNA Encoding a Glucosyltransferase Candidate: Proteomics and Transcriptomics as Tools to Help Elucidate Saponin Biosynthesis in Centella asiatica

  • Fernanda de Costa
  • Carla J. S. Barber
  • Darwin W. Reed
  • Patrick S. CovelloEmail author
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1405)


Centella asiatica (L.) Urban (Apiaceae), a small annual plant that grows in India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, and other parts of Asia, is well-known as a medicinal herb with a long history of therapeutic uses. The bioactive compounds present in C. asiatica leaves include ursane-type triterpene sapogenins and saponins—asiatic acid, madecassic acid, asiaticoside, and madecassoside. Various bioactivities have been shown for these compounds, although most of the steps in the biosynthesis of triterpene saponins, including glycosylation, remain uncharacterized at the molecular level. This chapter describes an approach that integrates partial enzyme purification, proteomics methods, and transcriptomics, with the aim of reducing the number of cDNA candidates encoding for a glucosyltransferase involved in saponin biosynthesis and facilitating the elucidation of the pathway in this medicinal plant.

Key words

Centella asiatica Saponin Glucosyltransferase Proteomics Transcriptomics 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fernanda de Costa
    • 1
    • 2
  • Carla J. S. Barber
    • 3
  • Darwin W. Reed
    • 3
  • Patrick S. Covello
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Plant Physiology Laboratory, Department of BotanyFederal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS)Porto AlegreBrazil
  2. 2.Center for BiotechnologyFederal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS)Porto AlegreBrazil
  3. 3.National Research Council of CanadaSaskatoonCanada

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