Different Types of Hypericum perforatum cvs. (Elixir, Helos, Topas) In Vitro Cultures: A Rich Source of Bioactive Metabolites and Biological Activities of Biomass Extracts
Microshoot agitated and bioreactor cultures (PlantForm bioreactors) of three Hypericum perforatum cultivars (Elixir, Helos, Topas) were maintained in four variants of Murashige and Skoog medium (MS) supplemented with 6-benzylaminopurine (BAP) and 1-naphthaleneacetic acid (NAA) (in the range of 0.1–3.0 mg/L). In both types of in vitro cultures, the accumulation dynamics of phenolic acids, flavonoids, and catechins were investigated during 5- and 4-week growth cycles, respectively. The contents of metabolites in methanolic extracts from biomasses collected in 1-week intervals were estimated by HPLC. The highest total contents of phenolic acids, flavonoids, and catechins were 505, 2386, and 712 mg/100 g DW, respectively (agitated cultures of cv. Helos). The extracts from biomass grown under the best in vitro culture conditions were examined for antioxidant and antimicrobial activities. The extracts showed high or moderate antioxidant activity (DPPH, reducing power, and chelating activity assays), high activity against Gram-positive bacteria, and strong antifungal activity. Additionally, experiments with phenylalanine feeding (1 g/L) in agitated cultures were performed reaching the highest enhancement of the total contents of flavonoids, phenolic acids, and catechins on day 7 after the addition of the biogenetic precursor (2.33-, 1.73- and 1.33-fold, respectively). After feeding, the highest accumulation of polyphenols was detected in the agitated culture of cv. Elixir (4.48 g/100 g DW). The high contents of metabolites and the promising biological properties of the biomass extracts are interesting from a practical point of view.