Isolation and identification of a phytotoxic substance in kiwifruit leaves

S. Okada, A. Iwasaki, I. Kataoka, K. Suenaga, H. Kato-Noguchi
The yield of kiwifruit [Actinidia deliciosa (A. Chev.) C.F. Liang et A.R. Ferguson] often decreases after 20 years of cultivation. Replanted young kiwifruit plants cannot grow well in fields where aged trees were previously cultivated. Phytotoxicity is considered one possible reason for this problem. However, allelopathic or phytotoxic substances from kiwifruit have not been reported. This study aimed to isolate and identify potentially allelopathic active substances in kiwifruit leaves. Extracts from kiwifruit leaves inhibited the growth of cress, suggesting that kiwifruit leaf extracts may contain growth-inhibitory substances. The extracts were then purified using a silica-gel column, Sephadex LH-20 column, ODS cartridge, and HPLC. The inhibitory activity of all fractions obtained in each purification step was determined by the cress bioassay. Quercitrin was finally isolated and identified as a growth-inhibitory substance. This substance inhibited cress root growth by more than 50% of control at 3 mM. The aglycone of quercitrin, quercetin, did not significantly inhibit cress growth. Quercitrin may work as an allelopathic substance and cause the kiwifruit replant problem. Further study is in progress to investigate the influence of kiwifruit leaf extracts and these flavonoids on kiwifruit seedlings.
Okada, S., Iwasaki, A., Kataoka, I., Suenaga, K. and Kato-Noguchi, H. (2018). Isolation and identification of a phytotoxic substance in kiwifruit leaves. Acta Hortic. 1218, 207-212
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2018.1218.28
Actinidia deliciosa, allelopathy, growth inhibitory substance, quercitrin, replant problem

Acta Horticulturae