Biotechnological Advances in Tinospora cordifolia (Willd.) Miers Ex Hook. F. & Thoms: Overview of Present Status And Future Prospects
Tinospora cordifolia (Willd.) Miers ex Hook.F. & Thoms is an important medicinal climber found in tropical Indian subcontinent including India, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh. It is considered as a rejuvenating drug capable of imparting youthfulness, vitality, and longevity to the consumer. Conventional propagation has a limited scope for improvement of Tinospora, owing to poor seed set and poor germination in natural conditions and overexploitation of the species. Propagation can be done vegetatively by cuttings, but this is season dependent. Biotechnological approaches such as cell and tissue culture can be a practical solution to these problems. Further, cell culture is also a prerequisite for several other biotechnological tools for improvement of a species, such as genetic transformation and in vitro production of useful metabolites. Knowledge of genetic relationships in indigenous germplasm could improve the effectiveness of tree improvement programmes. During last 25 years, efforts have been made to utilize these molecular and cell culture tools for the improvement of T.cordifolia. Present communication reviews the present status of biotechnological advances made in this important medicinal plant, as well as, the potential future prospects.