algoo

Alain Goossens leads the Specialized Metabolism Group. Across the plant kingdom, the jasmonate hormone steers the delicate balance between growth and the activation of defence programmes, such as the production of bioactive specialized metabolites. Plant cells are capable of producing an overwhelming variety of specialized metabolites, both in terms of complexity and quantity. These small organic molecules allow plants to cope with various types of stresses but often also have biological activities of high interest to human. Yet, this impressive metabolic machinery is still hardly exploited, mainly because of the limited molecular insights into plant specialized metabolism. 
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Tomato roots are continuously challenged by organisms living in their rhizosphere, such as nematodes, fungi and bacteria. Protein-protein interactions are essential in the establishment of these relations. Therefore, we are currently developing a platform to visualise and map the protein interaction networks that determine the responses of tomato roots to these biotic cues and identify key elements therein.

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Food has a great impact on our health and the prevention of disease. In a society where food is abundant, health depends on a balanced diet. The latter depends amongst others on grains, vegetables and fruits that are produced safely, but also on sufficient intake of vitamins and minerals, and access to health-promoting molecules.

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