The plant associate partner for NMC is the Centre for Biosystems Genomics. CBSG was established in 2003 and is focussed on two crops: tomato and potato. As food quality and taste are central themes, CBSG from the beginning committed to strategic investments in metabolomics, both to develop wet and dry lab technologies and to apply these to extend our biochemical knowledge of the crops.
The plant associate partner for NMC is the Centre for Biosystems Genomics (CBSG). CBSG was established in 2003 and has a strong focus on two crops: tomato and potato.
The Plant Associate (PA) theme within the NMC program, involves two research projects financed by NMC. The first project started in 2008 and deals with high-level data fusion and statistical modelling of data sets of various origins, including metabolomics. The extensive data sets used by this project all originate from the CBSG tomato fruit quality cluster, in which a large series of 94 tomato cultivars was screened over a three year period for variation in both phenotypic traits, fruit metabolite composition and genetic variation. The main aim of this tomato research is to elucidate which metabolites and related biosynthetic pathways determine tomato fruit sensory quality and to identify genetic loci underlying differential fruit quality characteristics. It has delivered a new protocol to statistically determine the amount of redundancy and supplementary information derived from different metabolite profiling platforms, and to pinpoint those metabolites that are the key to a specific sensory trait. In addition, methods have been developed that can statistically link these key metabolites to genetic markers used in marker-assisted plant breeding. The second project will start in 2011 and will be focussed upon plant-microbe interactions and developing bioinformatics tools, specifically related to plant metabolomics and plant metabolite databases.
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