Effect of terbinafine on the biosynthetic pathway of isoprenoid compounds in carrot suspension cultured cells

Begoña Miras-Moreno, Maria Begona Miras Moreno, Lorena Almagro, María Angeles Pedreño, Ana Belén Sabater-Jara

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista


Key message: Terbinafine induced a significant increase of squalene production. Terbinafine increased the expression levels of squalene synthase. Cyclodextrins did not work as elicitors due to the gene expression levels obtained. Abstract: Plant sterols are essential components of membrane lipids, which contributing to their fluidity and permeability. Besides their cholesterol-lowering properties, they also have anti-inflammatory, antidiabetic and anticancer activities. Squalene, which is phytosterol precursor, is widely used in medicine, foods and cosmetics due to its anti-tumor, antioxidant and anti-aging activities. Nowadays, vegetable oils constitute the main sources of phytosterols and squalene, but their isolation and purification involve complex extraction protocols and high costs. In this work, Daucus carota cell cultures were used to evaluate the effect of cyclodextrins and terbinafine on the production and accumulation of squalene and phytosterols as well as the expression levels of squalene synthase and cycloartenol synthase genes. D. carota cell cultures were able to produce high levels of extracellular being phytosterols in the presence of cyclodextrins (12 mg/L), these compounds able to increase both the secretion and accumulation of phytosterols in the culture medium. Moreover, terbinafine induced a significant increase in intracellular squalene production, as seen after 168 h of treatment (497.0 ± 23.5 µg g dry weight−1) while its extracellular production only increased in the presence of cyclodextrins.The analysis of sqs and cas gene expression revealed that cyclodextrins did not induce genes encoding enzymes involved in the phytosterol biosynthetic pathway since the expression levels of sqs and cas genes in cyclodextrin-treated cells were lower than in control cells. The results, therefore, suggest that cyclodextrins were only able to release phytosterols from the cells to the extracellular medium, thus contributing to their acumulation. To sum up, D. carota cell cultures treated with cyclodextrins or terbinafine were able to produce high levels of phytosterols and squalene, respectively, and, therefore, these suspension-cultured cells of carrot constitute an alternative biotechnological system, which is at the same time more sustainable, economic and ecological for the production of these bioactive compounds.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)1011-1019
Numero di pagine9
RivistaPlant Cell Reports
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2018


  • Acetates
  • Biosynthetic Pathways
  • Carrot suspension-cultured cells
  • Cell Culture Techniques
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cyclodextrins
  • Cyclopentanes
  • Daucus carota
  • Farnesyl-Diphosphate Farnesyltransferase
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant
  • Gene expression
  • Intramolecular Transferases
  • Naphthalenes
  • Oxylipins
  • Phytosterols
  • Plant Cells
  • Plant Proteins
  • Squalene
  • Terbinafine
  • Terpenes


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