About the Project
This project involves elucidating biosynthetic routes to plant alkaloids (nitrogen containing natural products). Gene candidates will be identified using sequencing technologies (e.g. transcriptomics, genomics). These genes will be cloned and the enzymes expressed recombinantly, in E. coli, yeast or Nicotiana benthamiana. Substrates for proposed enzyme reactions will be synthesised. Enzymes capable of catalysing alkaloid-forming reactions will be identified and characterised using mass-spectrometry. Multi-enzyme pathways will be constructed in heterologous hosts or in vitro to produce complex alkaloids from simple precursors. The aim of this project is to discover, characterise and utilise biocatalysts from alkaloid producing plants.
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