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Flavonoids are common plant natural products able to suppress ROS-related damage and alleviate oxidative stress. One of key mechanisms, involved in this phenomenon is chelation of transition metal ions. From a physiological perspective, iron is the most significant transition metal, because of its abundance in living organisms and ubiquitous involvement in redox processes. The chemical, pharmaceutical, and biological properties of flavonoids can be significantly affected by their interaction with transition metal ions, mainly iron.
Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are emitted by plants as a consequence of biotic and abiotic interaction which often change rapidly over time. Epigenetic factors, such as DNA methylation and histone modification, might trigger adaptive responses to these evolutionary pressures regulating both genes and transcription factors, as well as the rhythmic emission of VOCs through circadian clock regulation. In addition, transgenerational epigenetic effects and polyploidy could modify the generation of VOCs’ profiles of offspring, contributing to long-term evolutionary shifts.
Cereal grains provide half of the calories consumed by humans. In addition, they contain important compounds beneficial for health. During the last years, a broad spectrum of new cereal grain-derived products for dietary purposes emerged on the global food market. Special breeding programs aimed at cultivars utilizable for these new products have been launched for both the main sources of staple foods (such as rice, wheat, and maize) and other cereal crops (oat, barley, sorghum, millet, etc.). The breeding paradigm has been switched from traditional grain quality indicators (for example, high breadmaking quality and protein content for common wheat or content of protein, lysine, and starch for barley and oat) to more specialized ones (high content of bioactive compounds, vitamins, dietary fibers, and oils, etc.).
Plant metabolomics plays important roles in both basic and applied studies regarding all aspects of plant development and stress responses. With the improvement of living standards, people need high quality and safe food supplies. Thus, understanding the pathways involved in the biosynthesis of nutritionally and healthily associated metabolites in plants and the responses to plant-derived biohazards in humans is of equal importance to meet people’s needs. For each, metabolomics has a vital role to play, which is discussed in detail in this study. In addition, the core elements of plant metabolomics are highlighted, researches on metabolomics-based crop improvement for nutrition and safety are summarized, metabolomics studies on plant natural products including traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) for health promotion are briefly presented. Challenges are discussed and future perspectives of metabolomics as one of the most important tools to promote human nutrition and health are proposed.
C and N are the most important essential elements constituting organic compounds in plants. The shoots and roots depend on each other by exchanging C and N through the xylem and phloem transport systems. Complex mechanisms regulate C and N metabolism to optimize plant growth, agricultural crop production, and maintenance of the agroecosystem.
Natural products, particularly those extracted from plants, have been used as therapy for different diseases for thousands of years. The first written records on the plants used in natural medicine, referred to as “medicinal plants”, go back to about 2600 BC. A thorough and complete understanding of medicinal plants encompasses a multiplex of overlapping and integrated sciences such as botany, pharmacognosy, chemistry, enzymology and genetics. Psophocarpus tetragonolobus, a member of Fabaceae family also called winged bean, is a perennial herbaceous plant characterized by its tuberous roots and its winged pod twinning and a perennial legume rich in proteins, oils, vitamins and carbohydrates. Besides nutrients, winged bean also contains bioactive compounds that have therapeutic activities like anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive, antibacterial, antifungal, antiproliferative and cytotoxic activity, a few of which already been reported. This plant can also be used as a medicinal plant for future benefits.
Purple tomatoes represent a recent variant of tomato fruits characterized by a purple coloration, not present in the more common red fruited varieties. This peculiar pigmentation is due to the presence of anthocyanins. These are plant secondary metabolites responsible for red, purple and blue colorations of flowers, fruits and leaves in many species. They are usually assumed with the diet, being rich sources mostly represented by red and purple fruits or dark vegetables (e.g., berries, cherries, plums, grapes, black beans, red onions, eggplant, red cabbage, purple sweet potatoes). As other polyphenolic compounds, they can provide many health benefits, and, as a consequence, their consumption can be helpful in reducing the incidence of cardiovascular, metabolic and degenerative or chronic diseases and of certain types of cancer. Tomato fruits are naturally rich of carotenoids, vitamins and polyphenols, but do not contain anthocyanins, due to mutations in their specific biosynthetic pathway. However, in recent years, either through genetic engineering or introgression by breeding of specific gene variants using wild relatives, this biosynthetic block has been overcome. This allowed the production of the new tomatoes’ phenotypes characterized by purple pigmentation localized only on the fruit peel or in both peel and flesh. In purple tomatoes, the high concentrations of anthocyanins that can be achieved, and not to the detriment of other metabolites, represent a real added nutritional value of these fruits.
A protocorm-like structure those are generated from the vegetative explant in vitro, are known as protocorm like body (PLB). For the mass propagation of plant, PLBs regeneration is one of the key focusing. Orchid is the largest genus of the flowering plants and they have number of commercially important genus. Orchids are difficult to propagate by seeds and vegetative propagation methods. In vitro propagation is the most efficient technique for the orchid propagation. Induction and proliferation of PLBs can accelerate their propagation by reduce the time and costs. It is possible to propagate numerous numbers of plants within short period of time with low costs from PLBs. Researchers are trying to develop efficient PLBs induction and proliferation techniques using different plant growth regulators, carbon sources, and light emitting diodes. Here, we are discussing about the progress of the PLBs organogenesis in orchids.