The concentration of bioactive compounds in Plantago lanceolata is genotype specific

  • Lisa A Box AgResearch/Agricom
  • H Glenn Judson Agricom


Plantain (Plantago lanceolata) is known to contain bioactive compounds including verbascoside (acteoside), aucubin and catalpol. Limited New Zealand data are available to quantify the concentrations of secondary plant compounds in cultivars of plantain. This experiment compared secondary plant compound concentrations for five cultivars or breeding lines of plantain and the botanical distribution of these compounds over a year. For all cultivars verbascoside concentration was greatest, aucubin intermediate and catalpol lowest. The concentration of catalpol and verbascoside in leaf tended to be greater for the cultivars ‘Hercules’ and ‘Endurance’ compared with ‘Elite 2’, ‘PG742’ and ‘Tonic’. However, ‘Hercules’ and ‘Endurance’ tended to have lower concentrations of catalpol and verbascoside in scape (reproductive material from base to seedhead). The difference among cultivars in aucubin concentration was small. This experiment suggests that leaf concentration of catalpol and verbascoside is genotype specific.


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