Metabolic engineering of plant secondary products
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Plants interact with their environment by producing a diverse array of secondary metabolites. Many of these compounds are valued for their medicinal, industrial or agricultural properties. Other secondary products are toxic or otherwise undesirable and can reduce the commercial value of crops. Gene transfer technology offers new opportunities to modify directly plant secondary product synthesis through metabolic engineering. This article reviews some of the strategies which have been used to increase or decrease the synthesis of specific plant metabolites, as well as methods for expanding the biosynthetic capabilities of individual species.
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