Dr. Dapeng Li

   Department of Molecular Ecology
 Phone:+49 (0)3641 57 1131Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology
 Fax:+49 (0)3641 57 1102Hans-Knöll-Straße 8
  emailD-07745 Jena

  Research   Theses  Publications  Presentations  Awards  Teaching  help    to staff list 

Metabolomics which aims at the comprehensive analysis of the metabolites contained in one tissue or organism has become in recent years a critical technique to analyze changes in plant metabolism. Even though mass spectrometry has become the analytical method of choice in plant metabolomics, making sense of large MS-based metabolomics data-sets can be tedious and metabolite identification solely from MS data remains extremely challenging. Within this project, I aim at analyzing the metabolic response of Nicotiana attenuata, a wild tobacco used as model system for plant-insect interactions, to different herbivores. This implies the analysis of large high-resolution MS data-sets with multifactorial design (with varying tissue, insect, and genotype components as well as timing of elicitation). To make sense of these large sets of data and rigorously test hypotheses on metabolism regulation, efficient analysis work-flows have to be optimized. In the first part of this project, I plan to develop a strategy to produce a large set of non-redundant MS/MS data from tissues of different genotypes differently elicited. (1) The strategy currently tested is based on broad-range MS/MS analysis and we are optimizing the deconvolution using correlation analysis and network reconstruction and similarity-based annotation of the resulting MS/MS spectra. (2) When established, this strategy will be used to analyze time-series metabolomics experiments comparing the effect of different herbivores on N. attenuata metabolism. Previous work in our group has shown that many herbivory-responsive metabolites exhibit diurnal oscillations but the value of this regulation for the efficiency of defenses against herbivore is not known. (3) Within the ClockWorkGreen project, I would like as well to use the tools developed above to characterize, in collaboration with the circadian rhythm team, the metabolome of irPRR5, a transgenic line silenced for a clock component assumed to interact with herbivory signaling.
last updated on 2012-12-12