Botany online 1996-2004. No further update, only historical document of botanical science!


Cyanogenic glycosides: Some few plant species have the ability to produce cyanides. They are strong cytotoxins, competitive inhibitors of the FeIII of the heme group. The cells detoxify them by glycosylation, i.e. by linking them beta-glycosidically to sugar residues (usually glucose).

Glucosinolates are anions that occur only in the cells of a limited number of dicotyledonous families. Glucosinolates are very common in the order Capparales (best-known family: Brassicaceae) where they occur in every species hitherto examined. Among the best-known representatives are the active ingredients of horse-radish, radish and mustard. The elimination of aliphatic glucosinolates in rape (isothiocyanate or oxaziolin-2-thione, for example from glucorapiferin; or rhodaninion from glucobrassicines) achieved by cultivation resulted in so-called double zero varieties (00-varieties). The cultivation of simple zero varieties (0-varieties) is based on the elimination of erucid acid, a long-chained unsaturated fatty acid.

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