A study published in BMC Plant Biology demonstrated that SoilBuilder, a microbially derived soil additive, can increase the production of secondary metabolites in plants.
The study, which was conducted by researchers at the University of Kentucky, investigated how SoilBuilder application and timing of application (single or multiple times) influenced secondary metabolic responses by monitoring changes in the phenlypropanoid (PP) pathway in Arabidopsis thaliana.
Quantitative real-time PCR was used for transcriptional profiling of flavonoid and lignin pathway genes, and high performance liquid chromatography and liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-quadrupole-time of flight-mass spectrometry were used to determine flavonoid content.
The results showed that application of SoilBuilder induced the phenlypropanoid pathway and there was a different response to treatment that was dependent on application timing. However, both single application and multiple applications of the microbial-derived product induced flavonoid and lignin content in Arabidopsis leaves compared to an untreated control.
You can read the full study here.
Citation: Ali MB, McNear DH Jr. Induced transcriptional profiling of phenylpropanoid pathway genes increased flavonoid and lignin content in Arabidopsis leaves in response to microbial products. BMC Plant Biol. 2014 Apr 1;14:84. doi: 10.1186/1471-2229-14-84.