Forthcoming Special Issues

29 August 2022

Plant specialized metabolites as crucial player in plant-environment interaction: Recent advances and future prospects

Plant specialized metabolites as crucial player in plant-environment interaction: Recent advances and future prospects

Guest editors:

Dr. Vijay Kumar, Prof. Ariel Arencibia, Prof. Marcos Egea Gutierrez-Cortines, Dr. Devashan Naidoo

Special issue information:

Since ancient times, humanity has benefited from the consumption of secondary metabolites of plants. In recent years, there has been a rediscovery of these molecules and their properties for the modern pharmaceutical and nutraceutical industries. Altogether, empirical knowledge and the results of applied research in ethnobotany, pharmacology, phytochemistry and genetic improvement have enabled the use of plant secondary metabolites for centuries. However, to continue using these resources within a framework of sustainability, it is necessary to integrate the most advanced biotechnological tools and direct them to increase the availability and bioavailability (half-life) of these biomolecules by the human cells. In this sense, among the most pressing objectives will be the automation and scale-up of biosystems producing secondary metabolites and, the targeting of these biomolecules towards specific cells or tissues followed by the case-by- case trials for verification of their potential benefits and specific biological activity. Translational research was developed from the link of basic research with preclinical and clinical research in the area of ​​biomedicine. When referring to the biotechnology of secondary plant metabolites, this advanced and novel way of conceiving research should be understood as the linearity of the following steps. 1- Results of studies that characterize the physiological and molecular mechanisms that regulate induction and expression genes related to the production of secondary metabolites of various spectra (flavonoids, terpenoids, alkaloids, etc) and their compartmentalization processes. 2- Research applied to in vitro and ex vitro systems related to the management of metabolic routes that allow the development of bioprocesses and scaling of these secondary plant metabolites. 3- Research applied to increasing the bioavailability of secondary plant metabolites, as well as studies related to targeting specific molecules and / or tissues. 4- Studies of biological challenges that allow the elucidation and verification of biological activity in human cells for nutraceutical and / or pharmaceutical purposes.

In plant biodiversity and domesticated varieties, different profiles of secondary metabolites can be found, which have played an important role in the mechanisms of evolution and adaptability of plants to various environments. Mainly, the response of plants to environment stimuli is depends on the different metabolites synthesized, as well as the multi-functionality of each specialized metabolites. These metabolites have specific functions in the dynamic interaction of plants with the biotic and abiotic factors that surround them. The capacity of plant secondary metabolites to perform response to environmental stress, defense against pathogens and plant-environment interactions is well elucidated by different natural products. There is evidence that by secreting several metabolites plant can influence their microbiome for the regulation of metabolome. However, in-depth knowledge about the underlying mechanism of communication between the plant secondary metabolites and plant microbiome is limited. Finally, better understanding the relationship between plant secondary metabolites and plant microbiome can enhance the yield of functional metabolites as well as improve the plant fitness.

We hypothesize that plant secondary metabolites have significance role in the adaptive responses of plants against unpredictable stress associated with climate change. The relationship between plant specialized metabolites-environment and regulation mechanism including metabolic, transcriptional and hormone signaling is the main issue explored in this research topic. For this Research Topic, we welcome submission of Original Research, Reviews, Opinions and Methods dealing with the action mode of plant secondary metabolites in plants ranging from whole-plant to molecular levels.

In particular, this research topic is devoted, however, not restricted to discover the following main topics:

· Specialized metabolites as stress and defense signaling molecules

· Plant secondary metabolites as abiotic and biotic stress in plant response

· Industrial production and application of secondary metabolites

· Secondary metabolites in plant-to-plant communications

· Linking of secondary metabolites and plant microbiomes

· Functions of metabolic engineering to understand the signaling pathway in plant secondary metabolites

· Role of secondary metabolites in the regulation of hormone signaling

· Transcriptional regulation of plant secondary metabolites

· Plant secondary metabolites in health and disease.

Manuscript submission information:

Submission Link:

Article type name: "VSI: Plant-Environment Interaction"

Submission Deadline: 28th February 2023


Plant specialized metabolites, Environment, Plant Microbiomes,

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