Melissa officinalis contains various secondary metabolites that have health benefits. Generally, irradiating plants with ultraviolet (UV)-B induces the accumulation of secondary metabolites in plants. To understand the effect of UV-B irradiation on the metabolism of M. officinalis, metabolomics based on gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) was used in this study. The GC-MS analysis revealed 37 identified metabolites from various chemical classes, including alcohols, amino acids, inorganic acids, organic acids, and sugars. The metabolite profiles of the groups of M. officinalis irradiated with UV-B were separated and differentiated according to their irradiation times (i.e., 0, 1, and 2 h), using principal component analysis (PCA) and hierarchical clustering analysis (HCA), respectively. The PCA score plots of PC1 and PC2 showed that the three groups with different irradiation times followed a certain trajectory with increasing UV-B irradiation. HCA revealed that metabolic patterns differed among the three groups, and the 1 h-irradiated group was more similar to the control group (0 h) than the 2 h-irradiated group. In particular, UV-B irradiation of plants led to a decrease in sugars such as fructose, galactose, sucrose, and trehalose and an increase in metabolites in the tricarboxylic acid cycle, the proline-linked pentose phosphate pathway, and the phenylpropanoid pathway. This study demonstrated that metabolite profiling with GC-MS is useful for gaining a holistic understanding of UV-induced changes in plant metabolism.
- Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry
- Melissa officinalis
- Metabolite profiling
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Analytical Chemistry