Volatile compositions and glandular trichomes of Zataria multiflora in different phenological stages under normal and drought stress conditions


BMC Plant Biol. 2024 May 31;24(1):483. doi: 10.1186/s12870-024-05196-0.


BACKGROUND: Zataria multiflora Boiss. is a medicinal and aromatic plant from the Lamiaceae family. It is extensively used in Iranian traditional medicine, mostly as a replacement for Thyme species. This study was focused on the analysis of chemical composition and the distribution and types of trichomes of Z. multiflora grown under different conditions. Equilibrium headspace analysis in combination with GC-FID-MS was used to identify volatile compounds released by aerial parts of Z. multiflora in development stages of 50 and 100% flowering under normal and drought-stress conditions.

RESULTS: The main constituents were p-cymene (20.06-27.40%), γ-terpinene (12.44-16.93%), and α-pinene (6.91-16.58%) and thymol (8.52-9.99%). The highest content of p-cymene (27.40%) and thymol (9.99%) was observed in the 50% flowering stage at the 90% field capacity, while the maximum γ-terpinene (16.93%) content was recorded in the 100% flowering stage under normal conditions. Using the SEM method, it was found that peltate glandular and non-glandular trichomes are distributed on the surface of the leaf, stem, and outer side of the calyx. However, capitate trichomes only are detected on the stem and calyx in the 100% flowering and beginning of blooming stages, respectively. The type and structure of trichomes do not vary in different development stages, but they differ in density. The highest number of leaf peltate glandular trichomes was observed in the vegetative and beginning of blooming stages at 50% and 90% field capacity, respectively. Non-glandular trichomes of the stem were observed with high density in both normal and stress conditions, which are more densely in 90% field capacity.

CONCLUSIONS: Since this plant has strong potential to be used in the food and pharmacological industries, this study provides valuable information for its cultivation and harvesting at specific phenological stages, depending on desired compounds and their concentrations.

PMID:38822252 | DOI:10.1186/s12870-024-05196-0