Extracting the secrets of secondary metabolites

Microbial secondary metabolites, those molecules not essential for growth yet essential for survival, may now be easier to characterize following a proof-of-concept study in which researchers paired CRISPR and CRAGE technologies.

The complex origins of Apiaceae and the current state of research

Recently, scientists from Nanjing Agricultural University summarized the current state of Apiaceae research, including traditional and molecular breeding practices, bioactive compounds, medicinal applications, nanotechnology, ...

Tree fern genome provides insights into its evolution

Land plants evolved 470 million years ago from algae and have since reshaped our world. Throughout their evolution, ferns have undergone a series of changes that have helped them survive on land. For the first time, researchers ...

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Metabolite

Metabolites are the intermediates and products of metabolism. The term metabolite is usually restricted to small molecules. A primary metabolite is directly involved in normal growth, development, and reproduction. Alcohol is an example of a primary metabolite produced in large-scale by industrial microbiology. A secondary metabolite is not directly involved in those processes, but usually has an important ecological function. Examples include antibiotics and pigments. Some antibiotics use primary metabolites as precursors, such as actinomycin which is created from the primary metabolite, tryptophan.

Examples of primary metabolites produced by industrial microbiology:

The metabolome forms a large network of metabolic reactions, where outputs from one enzymatic chemical reaction are inputs to other chemical reactions.

Metabolites from chemical compounds, whether inherent or pharmaceutical, are formed as part of the natural biochemical process of degrading and eliminating the compounds. The rate of degradation of a compound is an important determinant of the duration and intensity of its action. Profiling metabolites of pharmaceutical compounds, drug metabolism, is an important part of drug discovery, leading to an understanding of any undesirable side effects.

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