Cichorium intybus L. Hairy Roots as a Platform for Antimicrobial Activity

Suvi Häkkinen (Corresponding Author), Katarina Cankar, Liisa Nohynek, Jeroen van Arkel, Markus Laurel, Kirsi-Marja Oksman-Caldentey, Bart Van Droogenbroeck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Industrial chicory is an important crop for its high dietary fibre content. Besides inulin, chicory taproots contain interesting secondary metabolite compounds, which possess bioactive properties. Hairy roots are differentiated plant cell cultures that have shown to be feasible biotechnological hosts for the production of several plant-derived molecules. In this study, hairy roots of industrial chicory cultivars were established, and their potential as a source of antimicrobial ingredients was assessed. It was shown that hot water extracts of hairy roots possessed antimicrobial activity against relevant human microbes, whereas corresponding chicory taproots did not show activity. Remarkably, a significant antimicrobial activity of hot water extracts of chicory hairy roots towards methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus was observed, indicating a high potential of hairy roots as a host for production of antimicrobial agents.
Original languageEnglish
Article number140
Number of pages11
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 18 Jan 2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • chicory
  • antimicrobial activity
  • hairy roots
  • sesquiterpenes
  • polyphenols
  • MRSA


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