Metabolomics Approaches for Analyzing Effects of Geographic and Environmental Factors on the Variation of Root Essential Oils of Ferula assa-foetida L
Environmental factors shape the production and accumulation processes of plant secondary metabolites in medical and aromatic plants, and thus, their pharmacological and biological activity. Using an environmental metabolomics approach, we determined chemotypes and specific compounds on the basis of essential oils (EOs) from roots of 10 Iranian Ferula assa-foetida L. populations, and related them to geographical, climate and edaphic data. GC-MS revealed three distinct chemotypes characterized by (I) monoterpenes and Z-1-propenyl sec-butyl disulfide; (II) eudesmane sesquiterpenoids and α-agarofuran; (III) Z- and E-1-propenyl sec-butyl disulfide. NIRS measurements indicated a similar, but less distinct pattern. Structural equation models showed that EO constituents and content were directly influenced by edaphic factors (texture, pH, iron, potassium and aluminum content) and temperature, and predominantly indirectly by latitude, longitude and altitude. Predicting EO constituents or chemotypes by geographical, climate and soil factors can be used in F. assa-foetida to select populations with specific EO characteristics.
License Holder: 2020 American Chemical Society
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