Study examines medicinal compound in plant roots

Xanthones are specialized metabolites with antimicrobial properties that are found in the roots of medicinal plants called Hypericum perforatum, also known as St. John's wort. A New Phytologist study sheds light on the sites of synthesis and accumulation of xanthones in roots.

The study reveals that xanthones are produced and stored in the exodermis and the endodermis, the outermost and the innermost cell layers, respectively, of the cortex tissue in roots. The findings may be helpful for understanding the biosynthesis of xanthones and in efforts to manipulate them for medicinal purposes