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Hairy root cultures of Panax ginseng, established after the infection of root sections with Agrobacterium rhizogenes KCTC 2703, were cultured in phytohormone-free Murashige and Skoog (MS) liquid medium containing different concentrations of jasmonic acid and some other elicitors, in order to promote ginsenoside accumulation. Jasmonic acid in the range 1.0-5.0 mg l−1 (4.8-23.8 μM) strongly improved total ginsenoside production in ginseng hairy roots. Peptone (300 mg l−1) also showed some effect on ginsenoside improvement; however its effect was much weaker than that of jasmonic acid. Ginsenoside content and productivity were 58.65 and 504.39 mg g−1, respectively. The Rb group of ginsenoside content was increased remarkably by jasmonic acid, while Rg group ginsenoside content changed only slightly compared to controls. However, jasmonic acid also strongly inhibited ginseng hairy root growth.