Article | . 2017 Vol. 35, Issue. 2
Cultivation and Characteristics of Licorice F1 (Glycyrrhiza glabra x G. uralensis) Lines

Department of Biology, Chungnam National University1
Department of Herbal Crop Research, National Institute of Horticultural and Herbal Science, Rural Development Administration2
Converging Research Division, National Marine Biodiversity Institute of Korea3

2017.. 276:286


Licorice, a traditional Korean medicinal plant, is recognized for its main active ingredient, glycyrrhizin. The level of glycyrrhizin in Chinese licorice (Glycyrrhiza uralensis ) is lower than the reference level (2.5%) set by the Korean Pharmacopoeia, reducing its value as a medicinal herb. In this study, we aimed to overcome this problem by generating an interspecific licorice hybrid by crossing European licorice (G. glabra ) with Chinese licorice, resulting in the production of 32 F1 lines. A comparison of genetic traits revealed variations in glycyrrhizin content among lines, ranging from 1.5 to 5.6%, with a mean value of 3.2%; these values are higher than that of the parental plants. Additionally, 25 lines (78.1%) had a glycyrrhizin content greater than 2.5%, which is higher than the reference level set by the Korean Pharmacopoeia. Four of these lines had glycyrrhizin levels higher than the WHO recommended level of 4.0%. A comparison of phenotypic characteristics showed that the leaves of the hybrids possessed all of the characteristics of European and Chinese licorice; however, the stems of most hybrids had characteristics of European licorice. Finally, we determined the genetic distances of 34 samples of Glycyrrhiza plants (parents, 32 F1 lines) by random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD); the F1 lines showed a close genetic distance. We plan to develop to a cultivar using five of these lines (glycyrrhizin content < 4.0%).

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