Special Issue "Molecular Research in Plant Secondary Metabolism"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (25 April 2013)
Prof. Dr. Marcello Iriti (Website)
Department of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, Milan State University, Via G. Celoria 2, Milan 20133, Italy
Interests: bioactive phytochemicals; plant secondary metabolism; medicinal and food plants; environmental pollution; environmental stresses; nutraceuticals; functional foods; ethnobotany; complementary and alternative medicine
In plants, the ecological and functional roles of secondary metabolites range from adaptation to harsh environments, to chemical communication and pollination. In their environment, these sessile organisms have to cope with a plethora of external (potentially) stressful conditions. Pathogen challenge, adverse climate and environmental pollution are detrimental factors that plants have to overcome to survive. Therefore, on the other side of the barricade, plants mount a complex array of defence reactions to tolerate all these biotic and abiotic stresses, including the biosynthesis of antimicrobial and antioxidant phytoalexins. Similarly, plants produce and release semiochemicals and allelochemicals for intra- and interpescific communication, in order to defend themselves from phytophagy and other predators. In addition, flower colours (pigments) and scents (volatile compounds) are pivotal in attracting pollinators, the vectors of pollen grains and key player in reproduction of angiosperms. Plants spent a considerable amount of their metabolic reserves to defend themselves, balancing their available resources between primary (growth and reproduction) and secondary (defence) metabolism. These metabolic costs arise from the complex defence machinery mounted by plants at level of genes, proteins and secondary metabolites. In other terms, defence responses may have an impact on the plant fitness, thus resulting limiting for the species. In the last decades, emphasis has been paid to bioactive secondary metabolites in medicinal and food plants, possibly because of their healthy potential for humans. A huge number of in vitro and in vivo studies documented antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, antitumoral, cardio- and neuroprotective activities of different phytochemicals, including phenylpropanoids, isoprenoids, alkaloids, glucosinolates, betalains and others. In this view, priming plants for improving secondary metabolite biosynthesis may represent a reliable strategy to meet plant defence and human nutrition, with a number of elicitors available in agricultural practice and able to stimulate accumulation of bioactives in plant tissues and products. We invite investigators to submit both original research and review articles that explore all the aspects of plant secondary metabolism and its regulation, at gene, protein and metabolic levels. We are also interested in contributions in the field of chemical ecology, nutraceutical and medicinal plant research. Potential topics include, but are not limited to:
- Plant resistance mechanisms against pathogens
- Plant tolerance strategies against abiotic stresses
- Global climate change
- Water, air and soil pollution
- Fitness costs
- Chemical ecology
- Medicinal plants
- Essential oils
Professor Marcello Iriti
Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. Papers will be published continuously (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.
Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are refereed through a peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed Open Access monthly journal published by MDPI.
- plant stress physiology and biology
- bioactive phytochemicals
- natural products
- healthy plant foods