Biotechnological Production of Aromatic Oils from Plants
Aromatic oils possess special economic significance. These oils have several uses in medicinal, food and cosmetic industries. Plants produce aromatic oils in specialised structures created by anatomical boundaries. Under natural conditions, aromatic oils are derived in minute quantities from secondary metabolites like terpenes. The application of biotechnology has been profound in the field of plant biology with its success ranging from generation of stress-resistant/tolerant varieties to the development of edible vaccines. The current chapter discusses the potential applications of metabolic engineering in elevating the production of aromatic oils in plants. Isolation and characterisation of target genes are essential for the genetic reprogramming of the metabolic pathways in plants. Overexpression of the genes acting as positive regulators and downregulation of those posing as negative regulators increased oil production in selected plant species. This will aid the development of plants as aromatic oil-producing bio-factories. Thus, this field ensures huge industrial potential in spite of being naive.
KeywordsAromatic oils Oil chemistry Specialised structures Biotechnology Metabolic engineering Transgenic plants Enzyme technology
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