Original Research

Secondary metabolites profiling of Vernonia amygdalina Del. in response to copper-induced abiotic stress

Abosede Adu, Anthony Ojekale, Bamidele John, Opeyemi N. Avoseh
Journal of Medicinal Plants for Economic Development | Vol 5, No 1 | a91 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jomped.v5i1.91 | © 2021 Bamidele John, Abosede Ayotunde Adu, Anthony Ojekale, Opeyemi Avoseh | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 17 May 2020 | Published: 17 February 2021

About the author(s)

Abosede Adu, Department of Botany, Faculty of Sciences, Lagos State University, Ojo, Nigeria
Anthony Ojekale, Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Sciences, Lagos State University, Ojo, Nigeria
Bamidele John, Department of Botany, Faculty of Sciences, Lagos State University, Ojo, Nigeria
Opeyemi N. Avoseh, Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Computer Science and Applied Science, Vaal University of Technology, Vanderbijlpark, Nigeria


Background: Vernonia amygdalina is a green leafy vegetable that grows in tropical Africa and popularly cultivated in the southern part of Nigeria for its economic, nutritional and ethnomedicine value.

Aims: This study analysed the influence of copper-induced abiotic stress on the deoxyribonucleic acid and secondary metabolites of V. amygdalina.

Setting: Analyses of plant material were carried out in the Department of Botany, Lagos State University.

Methods: Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) extraction and Inter Simple Sequence Repeat (ISSR) amplification were performed. Copper (Cu) concentration in leaves and stem of V. amygdalina was determined using inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES), secondary metabolites were determined using gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC-MS) and the effect on DNA amplification and profiling was analysed using gel electrophoresis.

Results: After 41 days of cultivation, the stem of V. amygdalina significantly bioaccumulated 37 mg/L, 50 mg/L and 215 mg/L of Cu after spiking with 400 mg/L, 1000 mg/L and 2000 mg/L, respectively, whilst the leaves accumulated 52 mg/L, 100 mg/L and 350 mg/L of Cu, respectively. Copper-impregnated soil influenced phytochemicals of the plants by causing inconsistent increase and decrease in specific compounds such as levomenthol, methyl stearate and glycerine. Deoxyribonucleic acid bands of the stem and leaf of V. amygdalina from control site showed no band shift, whilst band shift occurred in the stem and leaf of the Cu-spiked V. amygdalina.

Conclusion: This study revealed the leaves of V. amygdalina having higher Cu accumulation capacity than the stems. Also, Cu alters the quality and quantity of phytochemicals in plant parts.


V. amygdalina; copper; phytochemicals; abiotic stress; bioaccumulation


Total abstract views: 3099
Total article views: 3131

Crossref Citations

No related citations found.