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A major interest of the research group Glandular Trichomes and Isoprenoid Biosynthesis is on plant secretory structures, and this in all aspects, whether they relate to development and differentiation, metabolic network and pathways or transport processes. These secretory structures can be located inside the plant, like oil glands, resin ducts or laticifers, but also on the plant surface such as glandular trichomes or nectaries. They are typically the site of biosynthesis and storage of large quantities of specialized metabolites, which contribute to the protection of plants against pathogens or herbivores, can attract beneficial organisms, but also work against abiotic stresses such as drought. For a number of years we have used glandular trichomes of the Solanaceae (tomato or tobacco) as models, initially to elucidate biosynthesis pathways of terpenoids produced in these organs and to use these as targets of metabolic engineering. Our interest has now expanded to understanding the metabolic network at the basis of the high productivity of glandular trichomes as well as their development and differentiation. In addition we use the knowledge gained on the biosynthesis of valuable terpenoids to design and implement metabolic engineering strategies. This is done in plants but also in microorganisms, such as baker’s yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae). For this engineering projects we use the Golden Gate based modular cloning system developed by our colleague Dr. Sylvestre Marillonnet.

This page was last modified on 08.11.2019.

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