Differences Between Aronia Medik. Taxa on the Morphological and Biochemical Characters
Keywords: Aronia spp., fruit, antioxidant activity, microelement
AbstractUseful wild plants usually decrease the content of biologically active substances in the culture. However, no one studied the reverse process and didn’t know whether the level of biologically active compounds increases in plants "escaping" from culture and becoming invaded in natural communities (invasive species). We studied Aronia melanocarpa, A. arbutifolia and A. × prunifolia in the arboretum of the Main Botanical Garden (Moscow, Russia), which were brought from the USA in the 1980s. Two samples of cultivated A. mitschurinii and one sample of invasive A. mitschurinii from the Moscow region were also included in the analysis. The task of the study is to determine the degree of heritability of macro- and micromorphological characters of North American plants introduced to Europe and their comparison with the analogous parameters of mane-made A. mitschurinii, especially with naturalized plants. The identification of the samples most promising for further broad cultivation by their antioxidant activity and the content of microelements in leaves was also our research purpose. The digital microscope KeyenceVHX-1000 and scanning electron microscope LEO 1430 VP were used for examining leaves by the trichome density and stoma’s parameters. The antioxidant activity of the fruits was determined by the 2,2-difenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) free radical scavenging test. The content of microelements in the plant material was determined by using ICP-MS (Agilent 7700ce, USA). The diagnostic features of the introduced North American Aronia were found to be inherited under culture conditions. The mass of fruits increases in this order: A. arbutifolia → naturalized A. mitschurinii →A. × prunifolia → A. melanocarpa → cultivated A. mitschurinii. An original table has been compiled to compare the studied taxa on 21 biomorphological features. The total antioxidant activity in dry fruits for methanol, ethanol and for water extracts was determined. Naturalizing plants have a higher antioxidant activity of alcohol extracts than cultivated plants, and, on the contrary, lower antioxidant activity of water extracts. There are 17 microelements (ppm) in the leaves of Aronia taxa. A. mitschurinii have the highest content of 10 from them: Fe, Mn, Sr, Zn, Se, Cu, Mo, Cr, As and Sb; A. × prunifolia have the highest content of 6 ones: Ni, Co, V, Cd, Pb, Sn; and A. arbutifolia have the highest content of B. Our observations suggest that naturalizing plants of Aronia have a potential source of useful bioactive compounds. Apparently, plants in a comfortable culture environment accumulate fewer biologically active substances than during forced adaptation to unfavorable ecological conditions.
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