Special Issue "Functional Plant Metabolism"

A special issue of Biomolecules (ISSN 2218-273X). This special issue belongs to the section "Biochemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 July 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Vasileios Fotopoulos
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Agricultural Sciences, Biotechnology & Food Science Cyprus University of Technology P.O. Box 50329, 3603 Lemesos, Cyprus
Interests: abiotic stress; antioxidants; priming; reactive oxygen species; reactive nitrogen species; reactive sulfur species; growth promotion; cellular signaling; plant biotechnology
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Assoc. Prof. Ivan Paponov
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
The Science Team Plant, Food & Climate, Department of Food Science, Agro Food Park 48, Aarhus University, 8200 Aarhus N, Denmark
Interests: plant nutrition; plant hormones; hydroponics; vegetable production; abiotic stress; quality of high-value crops; biofortification; reactive oxygen species
Dr. Georgia Ntatsi
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Laboratory of Vegetable Production, Department of Crop Science, Agricultural University of Athens, Iera Odos 75, 11855 Athens, Greece
Interests: vegetable production; hydroponics; plant nutrition; plant physiology; abiotic stress; fruit quality; biofortification; nitrogen fixation; phytohormones; plant metabolism; organic production
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Plants are considered the primary producers on our planet, since using solar energy they have managed to convert CO2 and H2O into various organic compounds, which are actually synthesized though a variety of metabolic processes. Plant metabolism includes both anabolic and catabolic reactions occurring in a plant through enzyme-catalyzed reactions that constitute metabolic pathways, the products of which are called metabolites. Plant metabolites are considered the main nutritional and nutraceutical sources for humans and fall into two categories: the primary metabolites (e.g., carbohydrates, organic acids, amino acids, nucleotides, fatty acids, steroids, or lipids) which are used for growth, development, and the reproduction and secondary metabolites (flavonoids, anthocyanins, chlorophyll degradation products, antioxidants)—compounds used to protect plants against herbivores and abiotic stress or attract pollinators.

NMR, liquid and gas chromatography, and MS are different analytical methods of high sensitivity and accuracy used for the comprehensive targeted and non-targeted measurement and identification of metabolites. The use of these methods can result in the chemical profiling of the effect of different biotic and abiotic stresses (salinity, drought, heat), nutritional status, and genetic and environmental influences on several metabolites, thereby leading to the optimization of metabolic processes and concomitantly increased agricultural yield and product quality.

The general idea of this Special Issue is to provide an international base for revealing the underlying current knowledge on primary and secondary metabolism and the biosynthetic pathways of various plant metabolites. In particular, submissions of  review papers and original research reporting novel scientific findings on the following topics (but not limited to these) are welcome:

  • Plant growth and primary/secondary metabolism;
  • Primary/secondary metabolism and carbohydrate storage;
  • Lipids and secondary metabolism;
  • Nitrogen fixation and secondary metabolism;
  • Secondary metabolism and sulfur;
  • Nucleotide metabolism in various plant responses to biotic and abiotic stress;
  • Macronutrients’ role in primary and secondary plant metabolism;
  • Micronutrients’ role in primary and secondary plant metabolism;
  • Abiotic stress and plant metabolism;
  • Hormones and the accumulation of biologically active compounds in plants;
  • Polyamine metabolism and plant growth;
  • Protein metabolism under biotic and abiotic stress;
  • Purine alkaloid metabolism and plant growth;
  • Impact of PGPRs and biostimulants on plant metabolism and plant growth;
  • Optimization of the accumulation of biologically active compounds in plants;
  • Medical use of secondary metabolites extracted from plants;
  • Plant secondary metabolites in nectar;
  • Metabolomic technology to tackle key questions in product quality assessment;
  • Secondary metabolites promoting food nutrition and human health.
Dr. Vasileios Fotopoulos 
Assoc. Prof. Ivan Paponov
Assist. Prof. Georgia Ntatsi 
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short 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 thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Biomolecules is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Primary metabolism
  • Secondary metabolism
  • Metabolic pathways
  • Metabolomics
  • Yield
  • Plant growth
  • Fruit quality
  • Crop physiology
  • Antioxidants
  • Hormones
  • Macronutrients
  • Micronutrients
  • Biotic and abiotic stress
  • Nitrogen fixation
  • Biofortification

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Article
High-Throughput LC-ESI-MS/MS Metabolomics Approach Reveals Regulation of Metabolites Related to Diverse Functions in Mature Fruit of Grafted Watermelon
Biomolecules 2021, 11(5), 628; https://doi.org/10.3390/biom11050628 - 23 Apr 2021
Viewed by 728
Abstract
Grafting has been reported as a factor regulating the metabolome of a plant. Therefore, a comprehensive metabolic profile and comparative analysis of metabolites were conducted from fully mature fruit of pumpkin-grafted watermelon (PGW) and a self-rooted watermelon (SRW). Widely targeted LC-ESI-MS/MS metabolomics approach [...] Read more.
Grafting has been reported as a factor regulating the metabolome of a plant. Therefore, a comprehensive metabolic profile and comparative analysis of metabolites were conducted from fully mature fruit of pumpkin-grafted watermelon (PGW) and a self-rooted watermelon (SRW). Widely targeted LC-ESI-MS/MS metabolomics approach facilitated the simultaneous identification and quantification of 339 metabolites across PGW and SRW. Regardless of grafting, delta-aminolevulinic acid hydrochloride, sucrose, mannose-6-phosphate (carbohydrates), homocystine, 2-phenylglycine, s-adenosyl-L-homocysteine (amino acids and derivatives), malic, azelaic, H-butanoic acid ethyl ester-hexoside isomer 1, (organic acids), MAG (18:3) isomer1, LysoPC 16:0, LysoPC 18:2 2n isomer (lipids) p-coumaric acid, piperidine, and salicylic acid-o-glycoside (secondary metabolites) were among the dominant metabolite. Dulcitol, mono-, and disaccharide sugars were higher in PGW, while polysaccharides showed complex behavior. In PGW, most aromatic and nitrogen-rich amino acids accumulated greater than 1.5- and 1-fold, respectively. Intermediates of the tricarboxylic acid cycle (TCA), stress-related metabolites, vitamin B5, and several flavonoids were significantly more abundant in PGW. Most lipids were also significantly higher in grafted watermelon. This is the first report providing a comprehensive picture of watermelon metabolic profile and changes induced by grafting. Hence, the untargeted high-throughput LC-ESI-MS/MS metabolomics approach could be suitable to provide significant differences in metabolite contents between grafted and ungrafted plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Plant Metabolism)
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Article
Profiles of Secondary Metabolites (Phenolic Acids, Carotenoids, Anthocyanins, and Galantamine) and Primary Metabolites (Carbohydrates, Amino Acids, and Organic Acids) during Flower Development in Lycoris radiata
Biomolecules 2021, 11(2), 248; https://doi.org/10.3390/biom11020248 - 09 Feb 2021
Viewed by 522
Abstract
This study aimed to elucidate the variations in primary and secondary metabolites during Lycorisradiata flower development using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and gas chromatography time-of-flight mass spectrometry (GC-TOFMS). The result showed that seven carotenoids, seven phenolic acids, three anthocyanins, and galantamine [...] Read more.
This study aimed to elucidate the variations in primary and secondary metabolites during Lycorisradiata flower development using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and gas chromatography time-of-flight mass spectrometry (GC-TOFMS). The result showed that seven carotenoids, seven phenolic acids, three anthocyanins, and galantamine were identified in the L. radiata flowers. Most secondary metabolite levels gradually decreased according to the flower developmental stages. A total of 51 metabolites, including amines, sugars, sugar intermediates, sugar alcohols, amino acids, organic acids, phenolic acids, and tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle intermediates, were identified and quantified using GC-TOFMS. Among the hydrophilic compounds, most amino acids increased during flower development; in contrast, TCA cycle intermediates and sugars decreased. In particular, glutamine, asparagine, glutamic acid, and aspartic acid, which represent the main inter- and intracellular nitrogen carriers, were positively correlated with the other amino acids and were negatively correlated with the TCA cycle intermediates. Furthermore, quantitation data of the 51 hydrophilic compounds were subjected to partial least-squares discriminant analyses (PLS-DA) to assess significant differences in the metabolites of L. radiata flowers from stages 1 to 4. Therefore, this study will serve as the foundation for a biochemical approach to understand both primary and secondary metabolism in L. radiata flower development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Plant Metabolism)
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Article
Glutathione Enhances Auxin Sensitivity in Arabidopsis Roots
Biomolecules 2020, 10(11), 1550; https://doi.org/10.3390/biom10111550 - 13 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1162
Abstract
Root development is regulated by the tripeptide glutathione (GSH), a strong non-enzymatic antioxidant found in plants but with a poorly understood function in roots. Here, Arabidopsis mutants deficient in GSH biosynthesis (cad2, rax1, and rml1) and plants treated with [...] Read more.
Root development is regulated by the tripeptide glutathione (GSH), a strong non-enzymatic antioxidant found in plants but with a poorly understood function in roots. Here, Arabidopsis mutants deficient in GSH biosynthesis (cad2, rax1, and rml1) and plants treated with the GSH biosynthesis inhibitor buthionine sulfoximine (BSO) showed root growth inhibition, significant alterations in the root apical meristem (RAM) structure (length and cell division), and defects in lateral root formation. Investigation of the molecular mechanisms of GSH action showed that GSH deficiency modulated total ubiquitination of proteins and inhibited the auxin-related, ubiquitination-dependent degradation of Aux/IAA proteins and the transcriptional activation of early auxin-responsive genes. However, the DR5 auxin transcriptional response differed in root apical meristem (RAM) and pericycle cells. The RAM DR5 signal was increased due to the up-regulation of the auxin biosynthesis TAA1 protein and down-regulation of PIN4 and PIN2, which can act as auxin sinks in the root tip. The transcription auxin response (the DR5 signal and expression of auxin responsive genes) in isolated roots, induced by a low (0.1 µM) auxin concentration, was blocked following GSH depletion of the roots by BSO treatment. A higher auxin concentration (0.5 µM) offset this GSH deficiency effect on DR5 expression, indicating that GSH deficiency does not completely block the transcriptional auxin response, but decreases its sensitivity. The ROS regulation of GSH, the active GSH role in cell proliferation, and GSH cross-talk with auxin assume a potential role for GSH in the modulation of root architecture under stress conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Plant Metabolism)
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