Aporphine alkaloid contents increase with moderate nitrogen supply in <i>Annona diversifolia</i> Saff. (Annonaceae) seedlings during diurnal periods

<p>Aporphine alkaloids are secondary metabolites that are obtained in low levels from species of the Annonaceae family. Nitrogen addition may increase the alkaloid content in plants. However, previous studies published did not consider that nitrogen could change the alkaloid content throughout the day. We conducted this short-term study to determine the effects of nitrogen applied throughout the diurnal period on the aporphine alkaloids via measurements conducted on the roots, stems and leaves of <i>Annona diversifolia</i> seedlings. The 60-day-old seedlings were cultured with the addition of three levels of nitrogen (0, 30 and 60 mM), and alkaloid extracts were analysed using high-performance liquid chromatography. The highest total alkaloid content was measured in the treatment with moderate nitrogen supply. Further, the levels of aporphine alkaloids changed significantly in the first few hours of the diurnal period. We conclude that aporphine alkaloid content increased with moderate nitrogen supply and exhibited diurnal variation.</p>