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      Identification of processed Chinese medicinal materials using DNA mini-barcoding

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          Most of Chinese medicinal herbs are subjected to traditional processing procedures, including stir-frying, charring, steaming, boiling, and calcining before they are released into dispensaries. The marketing and identification of processed medicinal materials is a growing issue in the marketplace. However, conventional methods of identification have limitations, while DNA mini-barcoding, based on the sequencing of a short-standardized region, has received considerable attention as a new potential means to identify processed medicinal materials. In the present study, six DNA barcode loci including ITS2, psbA-trnH, rbcL, matK, trnL (UAA) intron and its P6 loop, were employed for the authentication of 45 processed samples belonging to 15 species. We evaluated the amplification efficiency of each locus. We also examined the identification accuracy of the potential mini-barcode locus, of trnL (UAA) intron P6 loop. Our results showed that the five primary barcode loci were successfully amplified in only 8.89%–-20% of the processed samples, while the amplification rates of the trnL (UAA) intron P6 loop were higher, at 75.56% successful amplification. We compared the mini-barcode sequences with Genbank using the Blast program. The analysis showed that 45.23% samples could be identified to genus level, while only one sample could be identified to the species level. We conclude that trnL (UAA) p6 loop is a candidate mini-barcode that has shown its potential and may become a universal mini-barcode as complementary barcode for authenticity testing and will play an important role in medicinal materials control.

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          Author and article information

          Chinese Journal of Natural Medicines
          20 July 2017
          : 15
          : 7
          : 481-486
          1Institute of Chinese Materia Medica, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, Beijing 100700, China
          2School of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Life Sciences, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan 430070, China
          3Amway (China) Botanical Research and Development Center, Wuxi 214145, China
          Author notes
          *Corresponding author: Liu Xia, Tel: 86-27-87749379, E-mail: lrx1125@ ; Sun Wei, Tel: 86-10-84017374, E-mail: wsun@ .

          ΔCo-first author.

          These authors have no any conflict of interest to declare.

          Copyright © 2017 China Pharmaceutical University. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
          Funded by: Significant New Drugs Creation
          Award ID: 2014ZX09304307
          Funded by: National Science and Technology Pillar Program
          Award ID: 2011BAI07B08
          This work was supported by the Major Scientific and Technological Special Project for “Significant New Drugs Creation (No. 2014ZX09304307) and the Key Projects in he National Science and Technology Pillar Program (No. 2011BAI07B08).
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