Author(s): Feijó E,Oliveira R, Costa L
Light can act on essential oil yield directly on synthesis of secondary metabolites, or indirectly on plant growth. Varronia curassavica Jacq., Boraginaceae, is a native medicinal species from Brazil known as “erva-baleeira”, with anti-inflammatory activity related to its essential oil. Despite pharmacological evidences of this species and its economic importance for herbal medicine production, little is known about the effect of light on growth and essential oil production. This study aimed to analyze the influence of different irradiances on growth, frequency of trichomes, essential oil yield and composition of V. curassavica. The irradiance affected plant growth, but no significant alteration on leaf biomass was detected. The increase in essential oil content under higher irradiance reflected on essential oil yield, and is associated with higher frequency of glandular, globular trichomes. The essential oil composition, rich in caryophyllene derivatives was affected by irradiance, but α-humulene, the constituent of pharmaceutical interest, remained unchanged.
Cordia verbenacea ; Irradiance; Medicinal plant; Caryophyllene oxide
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