2007 Volume 30 Issue 3 Pages 527-531
Chloroplast trnK gene sequences of Cnidium officinale and Ligusticum chuanxiong were determined to establish an effective method for identifying Japanese Senkyu and Chinese Chuanxiong, the two which have the same drug name in Chinese characters, similar external feature, but different botanical origins. Three sites of nucleotide differences were found between these 2 species at positions 767, 924 and 964 from upstream in trnK gene sequence, allowing molecular identification of the two plants and crude drugs. Further, three kinds of specific primers of 14 mer, 23 mer and 30 mer long were designed to detect these 3 sites of marker nucleotides. By using multiplex single base extension (MSBE) analysis with the 3 specific primers, C. officinale and L. chuanxiong could be distinguished clearly by the electrophoretograms, where 3 peaks with different color of ddTMP, ddCMP and ddTMP were observed in case of C. officinale and those of ddGMP, ddAMP and ddGMP in L. chuanxiong. Moreover, trnK gene sequence of “Dongxiong,” a kind of Chuanxiong cultivated in Northeast China, suggested that its botanical origin was C. officinale.