1988 年 108 巻 8 号 p. 675-696
De novo synthesis and biotransformation of secondary metabolites by plant cell cultures have been studied in my laboratory for about 25 years. Incorporation of traditional and advanced tissue culture techniques, i.e. chemical and physical regulations, engineering of apparatus, selection of high-yielding starins and hairy root cultures transformed with Ri plasmid, has made possible the successful production of;ginseng saponins (ginsenoside Rb1 and Rg1), morphinan alkaloids (morphine and codeine), berberine, caffeine, vitamin E, retrochalcone (echinatin) and so on. Furthermore, a large scale production of ginseng cells in 20 ton tank, morphinan alkaloid synthesis in redifferentiated poppy cells, and detection of 6'-deoxychalcone synthase activity in licorice cells have firstly been demonstrated.The biotransformational ability of cultured plant cells has been examined, employing terpenoids (citronellal, menthol, borneol, etc.), steroids (cardiac glycosides, pregnane derivatives and androgens), alkaloids (isoquinoline and indole) and phenolics (phenylpropionic acid, tropic acid, etc.) as substrates. Bioreactors with immobilized plant cells have been also developed. The reactions including oxidation, reduction, glycosylation, esterification, methylation and isomerization against administered compounds have been observed, and, consequently, even optical resolution of racemic substrates could be performed. De novo synthesis of plant products and biotransformation of organic compounds by plant cell cultures will contribute to plant bioindustry by providing medicinals and other useful compounds.