• Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors;
  • Alkaloid profiling;
  • Amaryllidaceae alkaloids;
  • Column bioreactor;
  • Cultivation conditions

Shoot culture of summer snowflake (Leucojum aestivum L.) was successfully cultivated in an advanced modified glass-column bioreactor with internal sections for production of Amaryllidaceae alkaloids. The highest amounts of dry biomass (20.8 g/L) and galanthamine (1.7 mg/L) were achieved when shoots were cultured at 22°C and 18 L/(L·h) flow rate of inlet air. At these conditions, the L. aestivum shoot culture possessed mixotrophic-type nutrition, synthesizing the highest amounts of chlorophyll (0.24 mg/g DW (dry weight) chlorophyll A and 0.13 mg/g DW chlorophyll B). The alkaloids extract of shoot biomass showed high acetylcholinesterase inhibitory activity (IC50 = 4.6 mg). The gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC/MS) profiling of biosynthesized alkaloids revealed that galanthamine and related compounds were presented in higher extracellular proportions while lycorine and hemanthamine-type compounds had higher intracellular proportions. The developed modified bubble-column bioreactor with internal sections provided conditions ensuring the growth and galanthamine production by L. aestivum shoot culture.