A split plot 3 × 3 experiment was designed to examine the impact of three concentrations of CO₂ (400, 800 and 1,200 μmol·mol⁻¹) on the phenolic and flavonoid compound profiles, phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL) and antioxidant activity in three varieties of Labisia pumila Benth. (var. alata, pumila and lanceolata) after 15 weeks of exposure. HPLC analysis revealed a strong influence of increased CO₂ concentration on the modification of phenolic and flavonoid profiles, whose intensity depended on the interaction between CO₂ levels and L. pumila varieties. Gallic acid and quercetin were the most abundant phenolics and flavonoids commonly present in all the varieties. With elevated CO₂ (1,200 μmol·mol⁻¹) exposure, gallic acid increased tremendously, especially in var. alata and pumila (101-111%), whilst a large quercetin increase was noted in var. lanceolata (260%), followed closely by alata (201%). Kaempferol, although detected under ambient CO₂ conditions, was undetected in all varieties after exposure. Instead, caffeic acid was enhanced tremendously in var. alata (338~1,100%) and pumila (298~433%). Meanwhile, pyragallol and rutin were only seen in var. alata (810 μg·g⁻¹ DW) and pumila (25 μg·g⁻¹ DW), respectively, under ambient conditions; but the former compound went undetected in all varieties while rutin continued to increase by 262% after CO₂ enrichment. Interestingly, naringenin that was present in all varieties under ambient conditions went undetected under enrichment, except for var. pumila where it was enhanced by 1,100%. PAL activity, DPPH and FRAP also increased with increasing CO₂ levels implying the possible improvement of health-promoting quality of Malaysian L. pumila under high CO₂ enrichment conditions.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.