Metabolic correlation networks have been used in several instances to obtain a deeper insight into the complexity of plant metabolism as a whole. In tomato (Solanum lycopersicum
), metabolites have a major influence on taste and overall fruit quality traits. Previously a broad spectrum of metabolic and phenotypic traits has been described using a Solanum pennellii
introgression-lines (ILs) population. To obtain insights into tomato fruit metabolism, we performed metabolic network analysis from existing data, covering a wide range of metabolic traits, including lipophilic and volatile compounds, for the first time. We provide a comprehensive fruit correlation network and show how primary, secondary, lipophilic, and volatile compounds connect to each other and how the individual metabolic classes are linked to yield-related phenotypic traits. Results revealed a high connectivity within and between different classes of lipophilic compounds, as well as between lipophilic and secondary metabolites. We focused on lipid metabolism and generated a gene-expression network with lipophilic metabolites to identify new putative lipid-related genes. Metabolite–transcript correlation analysis revealed key putative genes involved in lipid biosynthesis pathways. The overall results will help to deepen our understanding of tomato metabolism and provide candidate genes for transgenic approaches toward improving nutritional qualities in tomato.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited