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Co-cultivation of Curcuma longa with Piriformospora indica Enhances the Yield and Active Ingredients

Ruchika Bajaj, Aparna Agarwal, Kartikeya Rajpal, Shobhit Asthana, Rajesh Kumar, Ram Prasad, Amit C. Kharkwal, Irena Sherameti, Ralf Oelmüller, Ajit Varma


The rhizome of Curcuma longa is used in the traditional medicinal system. Its secondary metabolites curcumin and the volatile oil possess wound-healing properties and inhibitory activities against certain pathogenic fungi and bacteria. Piriformospora indica is a root endophytic fungus that colonizes many plant roots and promotes the growth. P. indica was cultivated in the 5 litre capacity fermentor under standard conditions. The filtered biomass was then mixed with raw talcum powder. The propagative buds were treated with this formulation containing both sterile and inoculated fungus. We demonstrated that co- cultivation of C. longa and P. indica resulted in pronounced productivity and enhanced secondary metabolites- curcumin and volatile oil in farmers’ field. To the authors best of knowledge this is the first report where symbiotic fungus has added value to this medicinal plant in the agricultural field.


Piriformospora indica; Curcuma longa; volatile oil; curcumin

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