Unraveling the triterpenoid saponin biosynthesis of the African shrub Maesa lanceolata

Tessa Moses, Jacob Pollier, Ahmad Faizal, Sandra Apers, Luc Pieters, Johan M Thevelein, Danny Geelen, Alain Goossens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Maesasaponins produced by the African shrub Maesa lanceolata are oleanane-type saponins with diverse biological activities. Through a combination of transcript profiling of methyl jasmonate-elicited M. lanceolata shoot cultures, functional analysis in transgenic M. lanceolata plants and the heterologous hosts Medicago truncatula and Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we identified three maesaponin biosynthesis genes. These include a β-amyrin synthase and two cytochrome P450s, CYP716A75 and CYP87D16, which catalyze the C-28 and C-16α oxidations of β-amyrin, respectively.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)122-135
Number of pages13
JournalMolecular Plant
Issue number1
Early online date5 Jan 2015
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 5 Jan 2015


  • cytochrome P450
  • oxidosqualene cyclase
  • C-28 oxidase
  • C-16α oxidase
  • triterpenoid saponin
  • maesa lanceolata


Dive into the research topics of 'Unraveling the triterpenoid saponin biosynthesis of the African shrub Maesa lanceolata'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this