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BY-NC-ND 3.0 license Open Access Published by De Gruyter June 2, 2014

Aloe Plants Accumulate Anthrone-Type Anthranoids in Inflorescence and Leaves, and Tetrahydroanthracenes in Roots

  • Anette Sigler and Hans W. Rauwald


The accumulation and distribution of characteristic secondary products in the different organs of an Aloe plant (A. succotrina Lam.) were studied by high performance liquid chromatography for the first time. In the leaves of the Aloe plant, only anthrone-C-glycosyls of the 7-hydroxyaloin type and, for the first time in plant material, the free anthraquinone 7-hydroxyaloeemodin were found. In contrast to previous reports on the distribution of secondary products in Aloe plants, anthrone-C-glycosyls were also detected in flowers, bracts and the inflorescence axis of the species examined. Aloesaponol I, a tetrahydroanthracene aglycone, was only present in the underground organs and in the stem. The 2-alkylchromone-C-glucosyl aloeresin B showed no specific occurrence as it was found in every type of organ. Based on these results and the findings of recent studies on Aloe roots and flowers, a distri­bution scheme of polyketide types in the Aloe plant was established. It suggests a separate and independent anthranoid metabolism for underground Aloe organs and stem on the one hand, and for leaves and inflorescence organs on the other hand. In the latter structures anthranoid metabolism seems to be additionally compartmentalized as the anthranoid pro­ files of inflorescence organs and leaves differ in two points relevant to anthranoid biosynthe­ sis: firstly, the occurrence of anthrone aglycones and secondly, the individual content of corre­sponding anthrone-C-glucosyl diastereomers.

Received: 1994-2-4
Revised: 1994-3-21
Published Online: 2014-6-2
Published in Print: 1994-6-1

© 1946 – 2014: Verlag der Zeitschrift für Naturforschung

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License.

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