A randomized complete block design experiment was designed to characterize the relationship between production of total flavonoids and phenolics, anthocyanin, photosynthesis, maximum efficiency of photosystem II (Fv/Fm), electron transfer rate (Fm/Fo), phenyl alanine lyase activity (PAL) and antioxidant (DPPH) in Labisia pumila var. alata, under four levels of irradiance (225, 500, 625 and 900 μmol/m(2)/s) for 16 weeks. As irradiance levels increased from 225 to 900 μmol/m(2)/s, the production of plant secondary metabolites (total flavonoids, phenolics and antocyanin) was found to decrease steadily. Production of total flavonoids and phenolics reached their peaks under 225 followed by 500, 625 and 900 μmol/m(2)/s irradiances. Significant positive correlation of production of total phenolics, flavonoids and antocyanin content with Fv/Fm, Fm/Fo and photosynthesis indicated up-regulation of carbon-based secondary metabolites (CBSM) under reduced photoinhibition on the under low light levels condition. At the lowest irradiance levels, Labisia pumila extracts also exhibited a significantly higher antioxidant activity (DPPH) than under high irradiance. The improved antioxidative activity under low light levels might be due to high availability of total flavonoids, phenolics and anthocyanin content in the plant extract. It was also found that an increase in the production of CBSM was due to high PAL activity under low light, probably signifying more availability of phenylalanine (Phe) under this condition.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.