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Special Issue "Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences"

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Biochemistry, Molecular and Cellular Biology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 April 2016)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Ute Roessner

Metabolomics Australia, School of BioSciences, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Vic. 3010, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: metabolomics; analytical biochemistry; metabolism; crop improvement; biomarker discovery

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Metabolomics is an emerging technology in the biological sciences aiming to determine and quantify as many metabolites as possible. Metabolites are the read-out of the biochemical phenotype of a plant upon genetic or environmental stimuli. Modern analytical technologies are being employed in metabolomics to cover the analysis of a large portion of the metabolome of plants, which are characterised to be particularly rich in their chemical diversity. In combination with sophisticated computational and statistical analysis, patterns of metabolite distribution and alterations upon stimuli are identified which are then related back to physiological, genomic and genetic information leading to a systems-wide understanding of the plant under investigation. Together with other omics sciences such as transcriptomics and proteomics, metabolomics has many applications in plant research, such as the investigation of stress adaptation and tolerance mechanisms, plant development, discovery of novel plant derived bioactive compounds, plant performance and improvement or plant nutrition.

Dr. Ute Roessner
Guest Editor

Dr. Roessner

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Keywords

  • metabolomics
  • metabolites
  • plant biochemistry
  • analytical chemistry
  • plant physiology
  • plant science
  • functional genomics
  • systems biology

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Published Papers (17 papers)

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Open AccessArticle Comparative Metabolite Profiling of Triterpenoid Saponins and Flavonoids in Flower Color Mutations of Primula veris L.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(1), 153; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18010153
Received: 21 October 2016 / Revised: 9 December 2016 / Accepted: 14 December 2016 / Published: 13 January 2017
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1850 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Primula veris L. is an important medicinal plant with documented use for the treatment of gout, headache and migraine reaching back to the Middle Ages. Triterpenoid saponins from roots and flowers are used in up-to-date phytotherapeutic treatment of bronchitis and colds due to
[...] Read more.
Primula veris L. is an important medicinal plant with documented use for the treatment of gout, headache and migraine reaching back to the Middle Ages. Triterpenoid saponins from roots and flowers are used in up-to-date phytotherapeutic treatment of bronchitis and colds due to their expectorant and secretolytic effects. In addition to the wild type plants with yellow petals, a red variant and an intermediate orange form of Primula veris L. have recently been found in a natural habitat. The secondary metabolite profiles of roots, leaves and flowers of these rare variants were investigated and compared with the wild type metabolome. Two flavonoids, six flavonoid glycosides, four novel methylated flavonoid glycosides, five anthocyanins and three triterpenoid saponins were identified in alcoholic extracts from the petals, leaves and roots of the three variants by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC)-diode array detection (DAD)/mass spectrometry (MSn) analyses. Anthocyanins were detected in the petals of the red and orange variety, but not in the wild type. No other effects on the metabolite profiles of the three varieties have been observed. The possibility is discussed that a regulatory step of the anthocyanin biosynthetic pathway may have been affected by mutation thus triggering color polymorphism in the petals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessCommunication Plant-to-Plant Variability in Root Metabolite Profiles of 19 Arabidopsis thaliana Accessions Is Substance-Class-Dependent
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(9), 1565; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17091565
Received: 30 June 2016 / Revised: 8 September 2016 / Accepted: 12 September 2016 / Published: 16 September 2016
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (1531 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Natural variation of secondary metabolism between different accessions of Arabidopsis thaliana (A. thaliana) has been studied extensively. In this study, we extended the natural variation approach by including biological variability (plant-to-plant variability) and analysed root metabolic patterns as well as their
[...] Read more.
Natural variation of secondary metabolism between different accessions of Arabidopsis thaliana (A. thaliana) has been studied extensively. In this study, we extended the natural variation approach by including biological variability (plant-to-plant variability) and analysed root metabolic patterns as well as their variability between plants and naturally occurring accessions. To screen 19 accessions of A. thaliana, comprehensive non-targeted metabolite profiling of single plant root extracts was performed using ultra performance liquid chromatography/electrospray ionization quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (UPLC/ESI-QTOF-MS) and gas chromatography/electron ionization quadrupole mass spectrometry (GC/EI-QMS). Linear mixed models were applied to dissect the total observed variance. All metabolic profiles pointed towards a larger plant-to-plant variability than natural variation between accessions and variance of experimental batches. Ratios of plant-to-plant to total variability were high and distinct for certain secondary metabolites. None of the investigated accessions displayed a specifically high or low biological variability for these substance classes. This study provides recommendations for future natural variation analyses of glucosinolates, flavonoids, and phenylpropanoids and also reference data for additional substance classes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Cannibalism Affects Core Metabolic Processes in Helicoverpa armigera Larvae—A 2D NMR Metabolomics Study
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(9), 1470; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17091470
Received: 29 April 2016 / Revised: 26 August 2016 / Accepted: 30 August 2016 / Published: 2 September 2016
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (2245 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Cannibalism is known in many insect species, yet its impact on insect metabolism has not been investigated in detail. This study assessed the effects of cannibalism on the metabolism of fourth-instar larvae of the non-predatory insect Helicoverpa armigera (Lepidotera: Noctuidea). Two groups of
[...] Read more.
Cannibalism is known in many insect species, yet its impact on insect metabolism has not been investigated in detail. This study assessed the effects of cannibalism on the metabolism of fourth-instar larvae of the non-predatory insect Helicoverpa armigera (Lepidotera: Noctuidea). Two groups of larvae were analyzed: one group fed with fourth-instar larvae of H. armigera (cannibal), the other group fed with an artificial plant diet. Water-soluble small organic compounds present in the larvae were analyzed using two-dimensional nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and principal component analysis (PCA). Cannibalism negatively affected larval growth. PCA of NMR spectra showed that the metabolic profiles of cannibal and herbivore larvae were statistically different with monomeric sugars, fatty acid- and amino acid-related metabolites as the most variable compounds. Quantitation of 1H-13C HSQC (Heteronuclear Single Quantum Coherence) signals revealed that the concentrations of glucose, glucono-1,5-lactone, glycerol phosphate, glutamine, glycine, leucine, isoleucine, lysine, ornithine, proline, threonine and valine were higher in the herbivore larvae. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Piriformospora indica Stimulates Root Metabolism of Arabidopsis thaliana
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1091; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071091
Received: 14 May 2016 / Accepted: 28 June 2016 / Published: 8 July 2016
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (4558 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Piriformospora indica is a root-colonizing fungus, which interacts with a variety of plants including Arabidopsis thaliana. This interaction has been considered as mutualistic leading to growth promotion of the host. So far, only indolic glucosinolates and phytohormones have been identified as key
[...] Read more.
Piriformospora indica is a root-colonizing fungus, which interacts with a variety of plants including Arabidopsis thaliana. This interaction has been considered as mutualistic leading to growth promotion of the host. So far, only indolic glucosinolates and phytohormones have been identified as key players. In a comprehensive non-targeted metabolite profiling study, we analyzed Arabidopsis thaliana’s roots, root exudates, and leaves of inoculated and non-inoculated plants by ultra performance liquid chromatography/electrospray ionization quadrupole-time-of-flight mass spectrometry (UPLC/(ESI)-QTOFMS) and gas chromatography/electron ionization quadrupole mass spectrometry (GC/EI-QMS), and identified further biomarkers. Among them, the concentration of nucleosides, dipeptides, oligolignols, and glucosinolate degradation products was affected in the exudates. In the root profiles, nearly all metabolite levels increased upon co-cultivation, like carbohydrates, organic acids, amino acids, glucosinolates, oligolignols, and flavonoids. In the leaf profiles, we detected by far less significant changes. We only observed an increased concentration of organic acids, carbohydrates, ascorbate, glucosinolates and hydroxycinnamic acids, and a decreased concentration of nitrogen-rich amino acids in inoculated plants. These findings contribute to the understanding of symbiotic interactions between plant roots and fungi of the order of Sebacinales and are a valid source for follow-up mechanistic studies, because these symbioses are particular and clearly different from interactions of roots with mycorrhizal fungi or dark septate endophytes Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Stable Isotope-Assisted Evaluation of Different Extraction Solvents for Untargeted Metabolomics of Plants
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1017; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071017
Received: 18 May 2016 / Revised: 13 June 2016 / Accepted: 21 June 2016 / Published: 28 June 2016
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (2462 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The evaluation of extraction protocols for untargeted metabolomics approaches is still difficult. We have applied a novel stable isotope-assisted workflow for untargeted LC-HRMS-based plant metabolomics , which allows for the first time every detected feature to be considered for method evaluation. The efficiency
[...] Read more.
The evaluation of extraction protocols for untargeted metabolomics approaches is still difficult. We have applied a novel stable isotope-assisted workflow for untargeted LC-HRMS-based plant metabolomics , which allows for the first time every detected feature to be considered for method evaluation. The efficiency and complementarity of commonly used extraction solvents, namely 1 + 3 (v/v) mixtures of water and selected organic solvents (methanol, acetonitrile or methanol/acetonitrile 1 + 1 (v/v)), with and without the addition of 0.1% (v/v) formic acid were compared. Four different wheat organs were sampled, extracted and analysed by LC-HRMS. Data evaluation was performed with the in-house-developed MetExtract II software and R. With all tested solvents a total of 871 metabolites were extracted in ear, 785 in stem, 733 in leaf and 517 in root samples, respectively. Between 48% (stem) and 57% (ear) of the metabolites detected in a particular organ were found with all extraction mixtures, and 127 of 996 metabolites were consistently shared between all extraction agent/organ combinations. In aqueous methanol, acidification with formic acid led to pronounced pH dependency regarding the precision of metabolite abundance and the number of detectable metabolites, whereas extracts of acetonitrile-containing mixtures were less affected. Moreover, methanol and acetonitrile have been found to be complementary with respect to extraction efficiency. Interestingly, the beneficial properties of both solvents can be combined by the use of a water-methanol-acetonitrile mixture for global metabolite extraction instead of aqueous methanol or aqueous acetonitrile alone. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Metabolic Responses of Poplar to Apripona germari (Hope) as Revealed by Metabolite Profiling
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(6), 923; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17060923
Received: 18 April 2016 / Revised: 15 May 2016 / Accepted: 20 May 2016 / Published: 20 June 2016
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (3236 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Plants have developed biochemical responses to adapt to biotic stress. To characterize the resistance mechanisms in poplar tree against Apripona germari, comprehensive metabolomic changes of poplar bark and xylem in response to A. germari infection were examined by gas chromatography time-of-flight mass
[...] Read more.
Plants have developed biochemical responses to adapt to biotic stress. To characterize the resistance mechanisms in poplar tree against Apripona germari, comprehensive metabolomic changes of poplar bark and xylem in response to A. germari infection were examined by gas chromatography time-of-flight mass spectrometry (GC–TOF/MS). It was found that, four days after feeding (stage I), A. germari infection brought about changes in various metabolites, such as phenolics, amino acids and sugars in both bark and xylem. Quinic acid, epicatechin, epigallocatechin and salicin might play a role in resistance response in bark, while coniferyl alcohol, ferulic acid and salicin contribute resistance in xylem. At feeding stages II when the larvae fed for more than one month, fewer defensive metabolites were induced, but levels of many intermediates of glycolysis and the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle were reduced, especially in xylem. These results suggested that the defense strategies against A. germari might depend mainly on the early defense responses in poplar. In addition, it was found that bark and xylem in infected trees accumulated higher levels of salicylic acid and 4-aminobutyric acid, respectively, these tissues displaying a direct and systemic reaction against A. germari. However, the actual role of the two metabolites in A. germari-induced defense in poplar requires further investigation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Metabolic Fingerprinting to Assess the Impact of Salinity on Carotenoid Content in Developing Tomato Fruits
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(6), 821; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17060821
Received: 27 April 2016 / Revised: 18 May 2016 / Accepted: 19 May 2016 / Published: 26 May 2016
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (3894 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
As the presence of health-promoting substances has become a significant aspect of tomato fruit appreciation, this study investigated nutrient solution salinity as a tool to enhance carotenoid accumulation in cherry tomato fruit (Solanum lycopersicum L. cv. Juanita). Hereby, a key objective was
[...] Read more.
As the presence of health-promoting substances has become a significant aspect of tomato fruit appreciation, this study investigated nutrient solution salinity as a tool to enhance carotenoid accumulation in cherry tomato fruit (Solanum lycopersicum L. cv. Juanita). Hereby, a key objective was to uncover the underlying mechanisms of carotenoid metabolism, moving away from typical black box research strategies. To this end, a greenhouse experiment with five salinity treatments (ranging from 2.0 to 5.0 decisiemens (dS) m−1) was carried out and a metabolomic fingerprinting approach was applied to obtain valuable insights on the complicated interactions between salinity treatments, environmental conditions, and the plant’s genetic background. Hereby, several hundreds of metabolites were attributed a role in the plant’s salinity response (at the fruit level), whereby the overall impact turned out to be highly depending on the developmental stage. In addition, 46 of these metabolites embraced a dual significance as they were ascribed a prominent role in carotenoid metabolism as well. Based on the specific mediating actions of the retained metabolites, it could be determined that altered salinity had only marginal potential to enhance carotenoid accumulation in the concerned tomato fruit cultivar. This study invigorates the usefulness of metabolomics in modern agriculture, for instance in modeling tomato fruit quality. Moreover, the metabolome changes that were caused by the different salinity levels may enclose valuable information towards other salinity-related plant processes as well. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Analysis of 2-(2-Phenylethyl)chromones by UPLC-ESI-QTOF-MS and Multivariate Statistical Methods in Wild and Cultivated Agarwood
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(5), 771; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17050771
Received: 8 April 2016 / Revised: 11 May 2016 / Accepted: 13 May 2016 / Published: 23 May 2016
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (1439 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Agarwood is the fragrant resinous material mainly formed from species of Aquilaria. 2-(2-phenylethyl)chromones, especially the highly oxidized 5,6,7,8-tetrahydro-2-(2-phenylethyl)chromones, are the main representative compounds from agarwood. It is important to determine whether agarwood in trade is from cultivated trees or natural trees in
[...] Read more.
Agarwood is the fragrant resinous material mainly formed from species of Aquilaria. 2-(2-phenylethyl)chromones, especially the highly oxidized 5,6,7,8-tetrahydro-2-(2-phenylethyl)chromones, are the main representative compounds from agarwood. It is important to determine whether agarwood in trade is from cultivated trees or natural trees in the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). We characterized the 2-(2-phenylethyl)chromones in agarwood by ultra-performance liquid chromatography coupled with electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (UPLC–ESI-QTOF-MS) and differentiated wild from cultivated agarwood by metabolomic analysis. A total of 141 chromones including 50 potentially new compounds were evaluated as belonging to four structural classes (unoxidized 2-(2-phenylethyl)chromones, 5,6,7,8-tetrahydro-2-(2-phenylethyl)-chromones, bi-2-(2-phenylethyl)chromones, and tri-2-(2-phenylethyl)chromones). The metabolic difference between wild and cultivated agarwood was analyzed by component analysis (PCA) and orthogonal partial least squares discriminant analysis (OPLS-DA). Fourteen markers of metabolisms in wild and cultivated agarwood were constructed (e.g., 6,7-dimethoxy-2-(2-phenylethyl)chromone, 6,8-dihydroxy-2-(2-phenylethyl)chromone, 6-methoxy-2-(2-phenylethyl)chromone, etc.). These results indicated that UPLC–ESI-QTOF-MS-based metabonomics analysis in agarwood may be useful for distinguishing wild agarwood from cultivated agarwood. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Expression of Castor LPAT2 Enhances Ricinoleic Acid Content at the sn-2 Position of Triacylglycerols in Lesquerella Seed
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(4), 507; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17040507
Received: 4 March 2016 / Revised: 25 March 2016 / Accepted: 30 March 2016 / Published: 6 April 2016
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (1640 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Lesquerella is a potential industrial oilseed crop that makes hydroxy fatty acid (HFA). Unlike castor its seeds are not poisonous but accumulate lesquerolic acid mostly at the sn-1 and sn-3 positions of triacylglycerol (TAG), whereas castor contains ricinoleic acid (18:1OH) at
[...] Read more.
Lesquerella is a potential industrial oilseed crop that makes hydroxy fatty acid (HFA). Unlike castor its seeds are not poisonous but accumulate lesquerolic acid mostly at the sn-1 and sn-3 positions of triacylglycerol (TAG), whereas castor contains ricinoleic acid (18:1OH) at all three positions. To investigate whether lesquerella can be engineered to accumulate HFAs in the sn-2 position, multiple transgenic lines were made that express castor lysophosphatidic acid acyltransferase 2 (RcLPAT2) in the seed. RcLPAT2 increased 18:1OH at the sn-2 position of TAGs from 2% to 14%–17%, which resulted in an increase of tri-HFA-TAGs from 5% to 13%–14%. Our result is the first example of using a LPAT to increase ricinoleic acid at the sn-2 position of seed TAG. This work provides insights to the mechanism of HFA-containing TAG assembly in lesquerella and directs future research to optimize this plant for HFA production. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Effects of Heat Stress on Metabolite Accumulation and Composition, and Nutritional Properties of Durum Wheat Grain
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(12), 30382-30404; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms161226241
Received: 18 November 2015 / Revised: 9 December 2015 / Accepted: 14 December 2015 / Published: 19 December 2015
Cited by 9 | PDF Full-text (1858 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Durum wheat (Triticum turgidum (L.) subsp. turgidum (L.) convar. durum (Desf.)) is momentous for human nutrition, and environmental stresses can strongly limit the expression of yield potential and affect the qualitative characteristics of the grain. The aim of this study was to
[...] Read more.
Durum wheat (Triticum turgidum (L.) subsp. turgidum (L.) convar. durum (Desf.)) is momentous for human nutrition, and environmental stresses can strongly limit the expression of yield potential and affect the qualitative characteristics of the grain. The aim of this study was to determine how heat stress (five days at 37 °C) applied five days after flowering affects the nutritional composition, antioxidant capacity and metabolic profile of the grain of two durum wheat genotypes: “Primadur”, an elite cultivar with high yellow index, and “T1303”, an anthocyanin-rich purple cultivar. Qualitative traits and metabolite evaluation (by gas chromatography linked to mass spectrometry) were carried out on immature (14 days after flowering) and mature seeds. The effects of heat stress were genotype-dependent. Although some metabolites (e.g., sucrose, glycerol) increased in response to heat stress in both genotypes, clear differences were observed. Following the heat stress, there was a general increase in most of the analyzed metabolites in “Primadur”, with a general decrease in “T1303”. Heat shock applied early during seed development produced changes that were observed in immature seeds and also long-term effects that changed the qualitative and quantitative parameters of the mature grain. Therefore, short heat-stress treatments can affect the nutritional value of grain of different genotypes of durum wheat in different ways. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Biosynthesis of Essential Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids in Wheat Triggered by Expression of Artificial Gene
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(12), 30046-30060; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms161226137
Received: 22 October 2015 / Revised: 16 November 2015 / Accepted: 19 November 2015 / Published: 16 December 2015
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (3455 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The artificial gene D6D encoding the enzyme ∆6desaturase was designed and synthesized using the sequence of the same gene from the fungus Thamnidium elegans. The original start codon was replaced by the signal sequence derived from the wheat gene for
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The artificial gene D6D encoding the enzyme ∆6desaturase was designed and synthesized using the sequence of the same gene from the fungus Thamnidium elegans. The original start codon was replaced by the signal sequence derived from the wheat gene for high-molecular-weight glutenin subunit and the codon usage was completely changed for optimal expression in wheat. Synthesized artificial D6D gene was delivered into plants of the spring wheat line CY-45 and the gene itself, as well as transcribed D6D mRNA were confirmed in plants of T0 and T1 generations. The desired product of the wheat genetic modification by artificial D6D gene was the γ-linolenic acid. Its presence was confirmed in mature grains of transgenic wheat plants in the amount 0.04%–0.32% (v/v) of the total amount of fatty acids. Both newly synthesized γ-linolenic acid and stearidonic acid have been detected also in leaves, stems, roots, awns, paleas, rachillas, and immature grains of the T1 generation as well as in immature and mature grains of the T2 generation. Contents of γ-linolenic acid and stearidonic acid varied in range 0%–1.40% (v/v) and 0%–1.53% (v/v) from the total amount of fatty acids, respectively. This approach has opened the pathway of desaturation of fatty acids and production of essential polyunsaturated fatty acids in wheat. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Metabolic Profiling of Pyrrolizidine Alkaloids in Foliage of Two Echium spp. Invaders in Australia—A Case of Novel Weapons?
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(11), 26721-26737; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms161125979
Received: 7 September 2015 / Revised: 26 October 2015 / Accepted: 26 October 2015 / Published: 6 November 2015
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (3063 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Metabolic profiling allows for simultaneous and rapid annotation of biochemically similar organismal metabolites. An effective platform for profiling of toxic pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs) and their N-oxides (PANOs) was developed using ultra high pressure liquid chromatography quadrupole time-of-flight (UHPLC-QTOF) mass spectrometry. Field-collected populations of
[...] Read more.
Metabolic profiling allows for simultaneous and rapid annotation of biochemically similar organismal metabolites. An effective platform for profiling of toxic pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs) and their N-oxides (PANOs) was developed using ultra high pressure liquid chromatography quadrupole time-of-flight (UHPLC-QTOF) mass spectrometry. Field-collected populations of invasive Australian weeds, Echium plantagineum and E. vulgare were raised under controlled glasshouse conditions and surveyed for the presence of related PAs and PANOs in leaf tissues at various growth stages. Echium plantagineum possessed numerous related and abundant PANOs (>17) by seven days following seed germination, and these were also observed in rosette and flowering growth stages. In contrast, the less invasive E. vulgare accumulated significantly lower levels of most PANOs under identical glasshouse conditions. Several previously unreported PAs were also found at trace levels. Field-grown populations of both species were also evaluated for PA production and highly toxic echimidine N-oxide was amongst the most abundant PANOs in foliage of both species. PAs in field and glasshouse plants were more abundant in the more widely invasive species, E. plantagineum, and may provide competitive advantage by increasing the plant’s capacity to deter natural enemies in its invaded range through production of novel weapons. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Metabolic and Physiological Responses of Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon (Vitis vinifera L.) to Near Optimal Temperatures of 25 and 35 °C
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(10), 24276-24294; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms161024276
Received: 30 July 2015 / Revised: 21 September 2015 / Accepted: 8 October 2015 / Published: 14 October 2015
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (2994 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon (Cs) grapevines were grown at near optimal temperatures (25 or 35 °C). Gas exchange, fluorescence, metabolic profiling and correlation based network analysis were used to characterize leaf physiology. When grown at 25 °C, the growth rate and photosynthesis of
[...] Read more.
Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon (Cs) grapevines were grown at near optimal temperatures (25 or 35 °C). Gas exchange, fluorescence, metabolic profiling and correlation based network analysis were used to characterize leaf physiology. When grown at 25 °C, the growth rate and photosynthesis of both cultivars were similar. At 35 °C Shiraz showed increased respiration, non-photochemical quenching and reductions of photosynthesis and growth. In contrast, Cs maintained relatively stable photosynthetic activity and growth regardless of the condition. In both cultivars, growth at 35 °C resulted in accumulations of secondary sugars (raffinose, fucose and ribulose) and reduction of primary sugars concentration (glucose, fructose and sucrose), more noticeably in Shiraz than Cs. In spite of similar patterns of metabolic changes in response to growth at 35 °C, significant differences in important leaf antioxidants and antioxidant precursors (DHA/ascorbate, quinates, cathechins) characterized the cultivar response. Correlation analysis reinforced Shiraz sensitivity to the 35 °C, showing higher number of newly formed edges at 35 °C and higher modularity in Shiraz as compared to Cs. The results suggest that the optimal growth temperatures of grapevines are cultivar dependent, and allow a first insight into the variability of the metabolic responses of grapevines under varied temperatures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Metabolite Profiling of Diverse Rice Germplasm and Identification of Conserved Metabolic Markers of Rice Roots in Response to Long-Term Mild Salinity Stress
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(9), 21959-21974; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms160921959
Received: 27 July 2015 / Revised: 19 August 2015 / Accepted: 6 September 2015 / Published: 11 September 2015
Cited by 13 | PDF Full-text (951 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The sensitivity of rice to salt stress greatly depends on growth stages, organ types and cultivars. Especially, the roots of young rice seedlings are highly salt-sensitive organs that limit plant growth, even under mild soil salinity conditions. In an attempt to identify metabolic
[...] Read more.
The sensitivity of rice to salt stress greatly depends on growth stages, organ types and cultivars. Especially, the roots of young rice seedlings are highly salt-sensitive organs that limit plant growth, even under mild soil salinity conditions. In an attempt to identify metabolic markers of rice roots responding to salt stress, metabolite profiling was performed by 1H-NMR spectroscopy in 38 rice genotypes that varied in biomass accumulation under long-term mild salinity condition. Multivariate statistical analysis showed separation of the control and salt-treated rice roots and rice genotypes with differential growth potential. By quantitative analyses of 1H-NMR data, five conserved salt-responsive metabolic markers of rice roots were identified. Sucrose, allantoin and glutamate accumulated by salt stress, whereas the levels of glutamine and alanine decreased. A positive correlation of metabolite changes with growth potential and salt tolerance of rice genotypes was observed for allantoin and glutamine. Adjustment of nitrogen metabolism in rice roots is likely to be closely related to maintain the growth potential and increase the stress tolerance of rice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessArticle Characterisation of Two Oxidosqualene Cyclases Responsible for Triterpenoid Biosynthesis in Ilex asprella
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(2), 3564-3578; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms16023564
Received: 2 December 2014 / Accepted: 27 January 2015 / Published: 5 February 2015
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Abstract
Ilex asprella, a plant widely used as a folk herbal drug in southern China, produces and stores a large amount of triterpenoid saponins, most of which are of the α-amyrin type. In this study, two oxidosqualene cyclase (OSC) cDNAs, IaAS1 and IaAS2
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Ilex asprella, a plant widely used as a folk herbal drug in southern China, produces and stores a large amount of triterpenoid saponins, most of which are of the α-amyrin type. In this study, two oxidosqualene cyclase (OSC) cDNAs, IaAS1 and IaAS2, were cloned from the I. asprella root. Functional characterisation was performed by heterologous expression in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Analysis of the resulting products by gas chromatography (GC) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) showed that both genes encode a mixed amyrin synthase, producing α-amyrin and β-amyrin at different ratios. IaAS1, which mainly produces α-amyrin, is the second triterpene synthase so far identified in which the level of α-amyrin produced is ≥80% of total amyrin production. By contrast, IaAS2 mainly synthesises β-amyrin, with a yield of 95%. Gene expression patterns of these two amyrin synthases in roots and leaves of I. asprella were found to be consistent with the content patterns of total saponins. Finally, phylogenetic analysis and multiple sequence alignment of the two amyrin synthases against several known OSCs from other plants were conducted to further elucidate their evolutionary relationship. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessReview Gibberellic Acid: A Key Phytohormone for Spikelet Fertility in Rice Grain Production
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(5), 794; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17050794
Received: 8 April 2016 / Revised: 14 May 2016 / Accepted: 19 May 2016 / Published: 23 May 2016
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Abstract
The phytohormone gibberellic acid (GA) has essential signaling functions in multiple processes during plant development. In the “Green Revolution”, breeders developed high-yield rice cultivars that exhibited both semi-dwarfism and altered GA responses, thus improving grain production. Most studies of GA have concentrated on
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The phytohormone gibberellic acid (GA) has essential signaling functions in multiple processes during plant development. In the “Green Revolution”, breeders developed high-yield rice cultivars that exhibited both semi-dwarfism and altered GA responses, thus improving grain production. Most studies of GA have concentrated on germination and cell elongation, but GA also has a pivotal role in floral organ development, particularly in stamen/anther formation. In rice, GA signaling plays an important role in spikelet fertility; however, the molecular genetic and biochemical mechanisms of GA in male fertility remain largely unknown. Here, we review recent progress in understanding the network of GA signaling and its connection with spikelet fertility, which is tightly associated with grain productivity in cereal crops. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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Open AccessLetter Global Profiling of Various Metabolites in Platycodon grandiflorum by UPLC-QTOF/MS
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(11), 26786-26796; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms161125993
Received: 25 August 2015 / Revised: 30 October 2015 / Accepted: 3 November 2015 / Published: 9 November 2015
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Abstract
In this study, a method of metabolite profiling based on UPLC-QTOF/MS was developed to analyze Platycodon grandiflorum. In the optimal UPLC, various metabolites, including major platycosides, were separated well in 15 min. The metabolite extraction protocols were also optimized by selecting a
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In this study, a method of metabolite profiling based on UPLC-QTOF/MS was developed to analyze Platycodon grandiflorum. In the optimal UPLC, various metabolites, including major platycosides, were separated well in 15 min. The metabolite extraction protocols were also optimized by selecting a solvent for use in the study, the ratio of solvent to sample and sonication time. This method was used to profile two different parts of P. grandiflorum, i.e., the roots of P. grandiflorum (PR) and the stems and leaves of P. grandiflorum (PS), in the positive and negative ion modes. As a result, PR and PS showed qualitatively and quantitatively different metabolite profiles. Furthermore, their metabolite compositions differed according to individual plant samples. These results indicate that the UPLC-QTOF/MS-based profiling method is a good tool to analyze various metabolites in P. grandiflorum. This metabolomics approach can also be applied to evaluate the overall quality of P. grandiflorum, as well as to discriminate the cultivars for the medicinal plant industry. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolomics in the Plant Sciences)
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