Plants produce many valuable medicinal compounds such as for example sesquiterpenoids. While terpene biosynthesis genes have been well studied, there is still only limited knowledge on how terpenes are transported within the cell and from the cell to the apoplast.
Multiple mechanisms involved in terpene transport
In my thesis, I investigated the transport of intermediates between enzymes, the role of Lipid Transfer Proteins and the role for vesicles in the transport of terpenes. A mutation in some LTPs reduced terpene emission from Arabidopsis flowers. Inhibition of vesicle transport increased terpene levels, most likely due to an effect on protein stability. I concluded that there are likely multiple mechanisms involved in terpene transport which complicates the analysis of a single transport pathway.