L. produces tropane alkaloids, and the hyoscyamine is dominant among them. Hyoscyamine is produced by hairy root cultures in vitro derived from native plants or plants with the genetically modified biosynthetic pathway for hyoscyamine. A common procedure is extraction from cultivated plants. Elicitors for increased production can be used in both cases. Live viruses are not well known for use as elicitors, therefore, plants grown in soil were artificially infected with the tobamoviruses Pepper mild mottle virus (PMMoV), Tomato mosaic virus (ToMV), and Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV). Differences in the content of hyoscyamine were between capsules and roots of infected and non-infected plants. Elicitation increased content of hyoscyamine in capsules 1.23-2.34 times, compared to the control. The most effective viruses were PMMoV and ToMV (isolate PV143), which increased content to above 19 mg/g of fresh weight of a capsule. The effect of each virus elicitor was expressed also in hyoscyamine content in roots. Elicited plants contained 5.41-16.54 times more hyoscyamine in roots compared to non-elicited plants. The most effective elicitor was ToMV SL-1, which raised production above 20 mg/g fresh weight of roots. It has been shown that tobamoviruses can be used as biotic elicitors.
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