Fernando Geu-Flores Lab – University of Copenhagen

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Copenhagen Plant Science Centre > Meet the Scientists > Fernando Geu-Flores Lab

Fernando Geu-Flores' Lab

 
Plant Specialized Metabolism 

Plants are unarguably the world’s greenest chemists. Powered by solar energy, they synthesize a wide variety of complex chemical structures using mainly water and carbon dioxide as starting materials. A great number of these elaborate chemicals are not essential for survival per se but play important roles in plant biology such as defense against pathogens or insects. These so-called ‘specialized metabolites’ have provided humanity with a wealth of medicinal compounds and industrially relevant chemicals.

Despite decades of research in plant biochemistry, many biosynthetic pathways that lead to important specialized metabolites remain cryptic, thus precluding biotechnological applications. Our group combines a solid background in chemistry with state-of-the-art omics technologies in a quest to elucidate the biosynthesis of selected plant specialized metabolites at the gene/enzyme level. Biotechnological applications include the removal of anti-nutritional compounds from promising crops and the production of medicinal compounds in cost-efficient systems.

Standing up (from left to right): Sophie Otterbach, Emilie Björnsdotter, Cecilia Rodriguez, Ting Yang. Front row: Fernando Geu-Flores, Niels Agerbirk, Davide Mancinotti.

Current Projects

Biosynthesis and transport of the lupin alkaloids.

Biosynthesis of pyrimidine glucosides in faba beans.

Structural diversity of glucosinolates and their metabolic products.

News

31-01-2017
Fernando Geu-Flores is awarded the prestigious Young Investigator grant from the VILLUM Foundation to find out how lupin beans can be cleared of toxic alkaloids. Read more here. 

27-04-2016
Postdoc Ting Yang receives a 2-year fellowship from the Novo Nordisk Foundation to discover key enzymes in alkaloid biosynthesis. Congratulations, Ting! Read more here.

05-02-2016
The Innovation Foundation has funded the NORFAB consortium, which will develop new faba bean varieties in a collaborative effort between Denmark, Finland, the UK, and Canada. CPSC Young Investigator Fernando Geu-Flores is a consortium partner. Read more here.