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Molecules 2018, 23(7), 1824; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules23071824

Seasonal Variation and Possible Biosynthetic Pathway of Ginsenosides in Korean Ginseng Panax ginseng Meyer

Metalloenzyme Research Group and Department of Plant Biotechnology, Chung-Ang University, Anseong 17546, Korea
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Mingfu Wang and Yueliang Zhao
Received: 28 June 2018 / Revised: 18 July 2018 / Accepted: 20 July 2018 / Published: 23 July 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Products Used as Foods and Food Ingredients)
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Abstract

Whereas Korean ginseng, Panax ginseng Meyer, is harvested in the fall, the variation of ginsenoside content in field-grown ginseng across seasonal development has never been investigated in Korea. Thus, ultra-high performance liquid chromatography (UHPLC) analysis of nine major ginsenosides, including ginsenoside Rg1, Re, Rf, Rg2, Rb1, Rc, Rb2, Rd, and Ro, in the roots of five-year-old P. ginseng cultivated in Bongwha, Korea in 2017 was performed. The total ginsenoside content changed as many as three times throughout the year, ranging from 1.37 ± 0.02 (dry wt %) in January to 4.26 ± 0.03% in May. Total ginsenoside content in the harvest season was 2.49 ± 0.03%. Seasonal variations of panaxadiol-type ginsenosides (PPD) and panaxatriol-type ginsenosides (PPT) were found to be similar, but more PPD was always measured. However, the seasonal variation of oleanolic acid-type ginsenoside, Ro, was different from that of PPD and PPT, and the highest Ro content was observed in May. The ratio of PPD/PPT, as well as other representative ginsenosides, was compared throughout the year. Moreover, the percent composition of certain ginsenosides in both PPD and PPT types was found to be in a complementary relationship each other, which possibly reflected the biosynthetic pathway of the related ginsenosides. This finding would not only provide scientific support for the production and quality control of the value-added ginseng products, but also facilitate the elucidation of the ginsenoside biosynthetic pathway. View Full-Text
Keywords: Panax ginseng; ginsenosides; UHPLC; seasonal variation; biosynthesis Panax ginseng; ginsenosides; UHPLC; seasonal variation; biosynthesis
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Kim, D.; Kim, M.; Raña, G.S.; Han, J. Seasonal Variation and Possible Biosynthetic Pathway of Ginsenosides in Korean Ginseng Panax ginseng Meyer. Molecules 2018, 23, 1824.

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