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Anticancer compound found in American mayapple
Date:9/4/2009

United States, although the idea was suggested by researchers more than 30 years ago. Previous research demonstrated that American mayapple leaves contain podophyllotoxin, making way for the development of American mayapple as a high-value crop for American growers. Zheljazkov explained that, until now, there has been no comprehensive study on the genetic resources of American mayapple colonies across the United States. "We hypothesized that there might be great variation with respect to podophyllotoxin content within American mayapple across the eastern United States."

The researchers studied the effect of location, plant nutrient concentration, and phytoavailable nutrients in soil on podophyllotoxin concentration in American mayapple across its natural habitats in the eastern United States. The study was the largest of its kind ever conducted; American mayapple leaves were collected from 37 mayapple colonies across 18 states.

This groundbreaking study confirmed that mayapple colonies in the eastern part of the United States can be used for the development of high podophyllotoxin cultivars, which could subsequently provide the base for commercial production of podophyllotoxin in the United States. The results from this study will help to develop a Geographic Information System (GIS) map of the genetic resources of American mayapple in the U.S.


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Contact: michael W. Neff
mwneff@ashs.org
703-836-4606
American Society for Horticultural Science
Source:Eurekalert

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