Plants as a Promising Biofactory for Bioactive Compounds: 2nd Edition

A special issue of Life (ISSN 2075-1729). This special issue belongs to the section "Plant Science".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 December 2024 | Viewed by 2287

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Guest Editor
Arkansas Biosciences Institute, Arkansas State University, Jonesboro, AR 72467, USA
Interests: plant cell culture; plant biotechnology; hairy roots; transgenic plants; recombinant proteins; plant cell wall; glycosylation; biofuels; biochemical engineering
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Dear Colleagues,

Plants naturally produce a diverse range of bioactive small molecules, such as alkaloids, flavonoids, terpenoids, and phenolic compounds, which are widely utilized as pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals. Plants can also be genetically engineered to produce valuable recombinant proteins (biologics) for therapeutic and industrial applications, such as cytokines, blood proteins, antibodies, vaccines, and industrial enzymes. The driving forces behind the rapid expansion of plant-based biofactories include their low production cost, product safety, and simple scale-up process. Both whole plants and in vitro cultured plant tissues or cells can serve as a viable bioproduction platform. In the past two decades, new strategies that harness metabolic engineering, glycoengineering, and genomic editing have been developed to enhance plant production systems, with the aim of achieving commercially significant production. However, major technical challenges, particularly these systems’ low product yields, remain to be overcome.

This Special Issue of Life aims to provide a broad spectrum of reviews and original research contributions that report innovative strategies and approaches to enhancing the bioproduction of plant biofactories, as well as novel functions and applications of plant-produced bioactive compounds. In addition to papers focusing on higher plants, those on microalgae and moss production systems are also welcome.

Prof. Dr. Jianfeng Xu
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • plant cell culture
  • plant tissue culture
  • medicinal plants
  • secondary metabolites
  • bioactive compounds
  • nutraceuticals
  • recombinant proteins
  • biologics

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Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

15 pages, 1517 KiB  
Article
Chemical Analysis and Biological Activities of Extracts Isolated from Symbiotic L. japonicus Plants
by Foteini D. Kalousi, Michail Tsakos, Christina N. Nikolaou, Achilleas Georgantopoulos, Anna-Maria G. Psarra and Daniela Tsikou
Life 2024, 14(2), 189; https://doi.org/10.3390/life14020189 - 27 Jan 2024
Viewed by 867
Abstract
Plants produce a wide variety of secondary metabolites, including compounds with biological activities that could be used for the treatment of human diseases. In the present study, we examined the putative production of bioactive molecules in the legume plant Lotus japonicus, which engages [...] Read more.
Plants produce a wide variety of secondary metabolites, including compounds with biological activities that could be used for the treatment of human diseases. In the present study, we examined the putative production of bioactive molecules in the legume plant Lotus japonicus, which engages into symbiotic relationships with beneficial soil microorganisms. To monitor the production of secondary metabolites when the plant develops beneficial symbiotic relationships, we performed single and double inoculations with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and nitrogen-fixing Rhizobium bacteria. Plant extracts from non-inoculated and inoculated plants were chemically characterized and tested for anti-proliferative, apoptotic, and anti-inflammatory effects on human HEK-293 cells. Both shoot and root extracts from non-inoculated and inoculated plants significantly reduced the HEK-293 cell viability; however, a stronger effect was observed when the root extracts were tested. Shoot and root extracts from Rhizobium-inoculated plants and shoot extracts from AMF-inoculated plants showed apoptotic effects on human cells. Moreover, both shoot and root extracts from AMF-inoculated plants significantly reduced TNFα-induced NF-κB transcriptional activity, denoting anti-inflammatory activity. These results suggest that symbiotic L. japonicus plants are enriched with metabolites that have interesting biological activities and could be further explored for putative future use in the pharmaceutical sector. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plants as a Promising Biofactory for Bioactive Compounds: 2nd Edition)
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20 pages, 2466 KiB  
Article
Polyphenol Analysis via LC-MS-ESI and Potent Antioxidant, Anti-Inflammatory, and Antimicrobial Activities of Jatropha multifida L. Extracts Used in Benin Pharmacopoeia
by Durand Dah-Nouvlessounon, Michaelle Chokki, Essé A. Agossou, Jean-Baptiste Houédanou, Martial Nounagnon, Haziz Sina, Romana Vulturar, Simona Codruta Heghes, Angela Cozma, Jacques François Mavoungou, Adriana Fodor, Farid Baba-Moussa, Ramona Suharoschi and Lamine Baba-Moussa
Life 2023, 13(9), 1898; https://doi.org/10.3390/life13091898 - 12 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 978
Abstract
Jatropha multifida L., a plant from the Euphorbiaceae family, is commonly used in Benin’s traditional medicine due to its therapeutic benefits. This study aims to explore the medicinal efficacy of Jatropha multifida L. by evaluating its various biological activities. An initial phytochemical analysis [...] Read more.
Jatropha multifida L., a plant from the Euphorbiaceae family, is commonly used in Benin’s traditional medicine due to its therapeutic benefits. This study aims to explore the medicinal efficacy of Jatropha multifida L. by evaluating its various biological activities. An initial phytochemical analysis was conducted, following which the polyphenols and flavonoids were quantified and identified using LC-MS-ESI. The antimicrobial efficacy of the extracts was tested using agar diffusion. Their antioxidant capacity was assessed using several methods: DPPH radical reduction, ABTS radical cation reduction, ferric ion (FRAP) reduction, and lipid peroxidation (LPO). Anti-inflammatory activity was determined based on the inhibition of protein (specifically albumin) denaturation. The study identified several phenolic and flavonoid compounds, including 2-Hydroxybenzoic acid, o-Coumaroylquinic acid, Apigenin-apiosyl-glucoside, and luteolin-galactoside. Notably, the extracts of J. multifida demonstrated bactericidal effects against a range of pathogens, with Concentration Minimally Bactericidal (CMB) values ranging from 22.67 mg/mL (for organisms such as S. aureus and C. albicans) to 47.61 mg/mL (for E. coli). Among the extracts, the ethanolic variant displayed the most potent DPPH radical scavenging activity, with an IC50 value of 0.72 ± 0.03 mg/mL. In contrast, the methanolic extract was superior in ferric ion reduction, registering 46.23 ± 1.10 µgEAA/g. Interestingly, the water-ethanolic extract surpassed others in the ABTS reduction method with a score of 0.49 ± 0.11 mol ET/g and also showcased the highest albumin denaturation inhibition rate of 97.31 ± 0.35% at a concentration of 1000 µg/mL. In conclusion, the extracts of Jatropha multifida L. are enriched with bioactive compounds that exhibit significant biological activities, underscoring their therapeutic potential. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plants as a Promising Biofactory for Bioactive Compounds: 2nd Edition)
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