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Molecules 2008, 13(8), 1722-1742; doi:10.3390/molecules13081722

Application of Metabolic Engineering to the Production of Scopolamine

Laboratori de Fisiologia Vegetal, Facultat de Farmacia, Universitat de Barcelona, Avda Diagonal 643, E-08028, Barcelona, Spain
Departamento de Alimentos y Biotecnologia, Facultad de Química, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, México DF, México
Medicinal Plants and Drugs Research Institute, Shahid Beheshti University, Evin, Tehran, Iran
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 3 June 2008 / Revised: 12 August 2008 / Accepted: 14 August 2008 / Published: 18 August 2008
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Alkaloids: Novel Therapeutic Perspectives)
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Scopolamine is an alkaloid widely used in medicine for its anticholinergic activity. The aim of this review is to show that metabolic engineering techniques constitute a suitable tool to improve the production of tropane alkaloids, focusing in particular on scopolamine. We present an overview of results obtained by various research groups, including our own, who have studied the overexpression of genes involved in the biosynthesis of scopolamine in different plant species that produce tropane alkaloids. Experiments carried out to improve production in hairy root cultures will also be described, as well as those attempting to biotransform hyoscyamine into scopolamine in roots and transgenic tobacco cells.
Keywords: Scopolamine; hyoscyamine; hairy roots; putrescine N-methyltransferase; hyoscyamine-6-β-hydroxylase. Scopolamine; hyoscyamine; hairy roots; putrescine N-methyltransferase; hyoscyamine-6-β-hydroxylase.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Palazón, J.; Navarro-Ocaña, A.; Hernandez-Vazquez, L.; Mirjalili, M.H. Application of Metabolic Engineering to the Production of Scopolamine. Molecules 2008, 13, 1722-1742.

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