Ageratum conyzoides Linn. is well known for its insecticidal properties due to the rich content of chromenes. The work mainly concentrated on the increased production of Precocene II from methyl jasmonate (MeJa)- elicited shoot culture. The MS medium supplemented with 4.6 µM kinetin-induced multiple shoots was subjected to MeJa (100 µM) treatment for 10 days. Gas chromatography-MS report showed almost twofold increased production of Precocene II (6,7-dimethoxy-2,2-dimethyl-chromene) (29.92%) in elicited culture over control (13.44%). Likewise, high-performance liquid chromatography analysis of the elicited shoot culture also reported to have a high amount of Precocene II (13.5 ± 0.007 µg/mg) when compared with the control (4 ± 0.002 µg/mg). The increased level of antioxidant enzymes was observed in the elicited shoot culture. Followed by pure compound, Precocene II and methanol extract of elicited shoot culture exhibited better in vitro antioxidant activity and considerable cytotoxic activity on HeLa (cervical cancer) cells when compared with control. Overall, MeJa-elicited shoot culture had more of Precocene II and better biological activity.
Key words: Shoot culture, Methyl jasmonate, Precocene II, Antioxidant enzymes, In vitro antioxidant, Cytotoxic activity.