Tissue-specific metabolite profiling and quantitative analysis of ginsenosides in Panax quinquefolium using laser microdissection and liquid chromatography–quadrupole/time of flight-mass spectrometry
The root of Panax quinquefolium L., famous as American ginseng all over the world, is one of the most widely-used medicinal or edible materials. Ginsenosides are recognized as the main bioactive chemical components responsible for various functions of American ginseng. In this study, tissue-specific chemicals of P. quinquefolium were analyzed by laser microdissection and ultra-high performance liquid chromatography- quadrupole/time-of-flight-mass spectrometry (UHPLC-Q/TOF–MS) to elucidate the distribution pattern of ginsenosides in tissues. The contents of ginsenosides in various tissues were also compared.
A total of 34 peaks were identified or temporarily identified in the chromatograms of tissue extractions. The cork, primary xylem or cortex contained higher contents of ginsenosides than phloem, secondary xylem and cambium. Thus, it would be reasonable to deduce that the ratio of total areas of cork, primary xylem and the cortex to the area of the whole transection could help to judge the quality of American ginseng by microscopic characteristics.
This study sheds new light on the role of microscopic research in quality evaluation, and provides useful information for probing the biochemical pathways of ginsenosides.Graphical abstract.
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