Biotechnological Exploration of Transformed Root Culture for Value-Added Products

Min Shi, Pan Liao, Shivraj Hariram Nile, Milen I. Georgiev*, Guoyin Kai*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

68 Citations (Scopus)


Medicinal plants produce valuable secondary metabolites with anticancer, analgesic, anticholinergic or other activities, but low metabolite levels and limited available tissue restrict metabolite yields. Transformed root cultures, also called hairy roots, provide a feasible approach for producing valuable secondary metabolites. Various strategies have been used to enhance secondary metabolite production in hairy roots, including increasing substrate availability, regulating key biosynthetic genes, multigene engineering, combining genetic engineering and elicitation, using transcription factors (TFs), and introducing new genes. In this review, we focus on recent developments in hairy roots from medicinal plants, techniques to boost production of desired secondary metabolites, and the development of new technologies to study these metabolites. We also discuss recent trends, emerging applications, and future perspectives.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-149
Number of pages13
JournalTrends in Biotechnology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2021

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering

User-Defined Keywords

  • biosynthesis
  • biotechnology
  • genome editing
  • hairy roots
  • secondary metabolites


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