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BIOL 3900: Advanced Research in Life Sciences, Fall 2017: Background Literature

About Your Assigned Readings

All of your readings are available in electronic form. The book, Ignorance: How It Drives Science, is electronic and accepts unlimited online users simultaneously. Please do not download the entire book because that will keep others from using it for a week. You can save or print out 60 pages per session to do your reading.

There are links below to take you to the electronic journals where your assigned articles are posted. When you arrive at the webpage:

  1. Print or save the article - look for the link to the PDF file
  2. View supplementary materials if you wish
  3. Download the article's citation to a citation manager. The Libraries provides the citation manager RefWorks for all students, and the account continues after your graduate. Contact Erin if you want more information about RefWorks.

The article citations below are in the American Psychological Association (APA) citation style. You can learn about other citation styles on the Libraries website.

Book: Ignorance, How It Drives Science

An interesting perspective on the process of scientific research - a process that generates more questions than answers - or creates “ignorance.” Optional reading, but short and first chapters are particularly relevant to your experience in this research class.

Storage Lipid Compartmentalization and Metabolism in Plants (General)

1. Michal Pyc, Yingqi Cai, Michael S. Greer, Olga Yurchenko, Kent D. Chapman, John M. Dyer, Robert T. Mullen, 2017, Trends in Plant Science, Volume 22, Issue 7, Pages 596-609.

2. Vineet Choudhary, Namrata Ojha, Andy Golden, William A. Prinz (2015) A conserved family of proteins facilitates nascent lipid droplet budding from the ER. Journal of Cell Biology, vol. 211 no. 2 261-271.

3. Chapman, K. D., & Ohlrogge, J. B. (2012). Compartmentation of triacylglycerol accumulation in plants. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 287, 2288-2294.

4. Chapman, K. D., Dyer, J. M., Mullen, R. T. (2013). Commentary: Why don’t plant leaves get fat? Plant Science, 207 (0), 128-134. doi: 10.1016/j.plantsci.2013.03.003 Link directly to the article in ScienceDirect, a subscription database (accessible from UNT).

Additional general lipid link that might be helpful:


1., 2. - general reviews; other specific papers of interest:

1. B. Markus Lange and Amirhossein Ahkami (2013) Metabolic engineering of plant monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes and diterpenes—current status and future opportunities. Plant Biotechnology Journal (2013) 11, pp. 169–196. doi: 10.1111/pbi.12022.

2. Feng Chen, Dorothea Tholl, Joerg Bohlmann and Eran Pichersky (2011) The family of terpene synthases in plants: a mid-size family of genes for specialized metabolism that is highly diversified throughout the kingdom. The Plant Journal (2011) 66, 212–229. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-313X.2011.04520.x

3. Starks CM, Back K, Chappell J, Noel JP (1997) Structural basis for cyclic terpene biosynthesis by tobacco 5-epi-aristolochene synthase. Science. 1997 Sep 19; 277(5333):1815-20. doi: 10.1126/science.277.5333.1815

4. Chen F., Tholl D., D'Auria J.C., Farooq A., Pichersky E., Gershenzon J. (2003) Biosynthesis and emission of terpenoid volatiles from Arabidopsis flowers. Plant Cell 15:481-494. doi: 10.1105/tpc.007989

5. Booth JK, Page JE, Bohlmann J (2017) Terpene synthases from Cannabis sativa. PLoS ONE 12(3): e0173911.


Synthetic Biology

1. Lau, W., & Sattely, E. S. (2015). Six enzymes from mayapple that complete the biosynthetic pathway to the etoposide aglycone. Science, 349 (6253), 1224-1228. doi: 10.1126/science.aac7202 (Chemothrerapuetic drug intermediate) Link directly to the article in Science, a subscription journal.

2. Goodman, B. G. (2014, August 4). Experimental Ebola serum grown in tobacco leaves. WebMD Health News. Reviewed by Michael W. Smith, MD. Retrieved from

3. Lombardo, T. (2015, March 1). Designer yeast makes renewable jet fuel. Retrieved from

4. Harris, R. (2013, June 28, 3:48 am). Put down oil drill, pick up the test tube: Making fuel from yeast. Morning Edition, National Public Radio. Broadcast retrieved from

5. Bo Wang, Arman Beyraghdar Kashkooli, Adrienne Sallets, Hieng-Ming Ting, Norbert C. A. de Ruijter, Linda Olofsson, Peter Brodelius, Mathieu Pottier, Marc Boutry, Harro Bouwmeester, Alexander R. van der Krol (2016) Transient production of artemisinin in Nicotiana benthamiana is boosted by a specific lipid transfer protein from A.annua. Metabolic Engineering, 38, 159-169.

6. Liu Q, Majdi M, Cankar K, Goedbloed M, Charnikhova T, et al. (2011) Reconstitution of the Costunolide Biosynthetic Pathway in Yeast and Nicotiana benthamiana. PLoS ONE 6(8): e23255. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0023255

7. Katarina Cankar, Esmer Jongedijk, Martin Klompmaker, Timotej Majdic, Roland Mumm, Harro Bouwmeester, Dirk Bosch and Jules Beekwilder (2015) (+)-Valencene production in Nicotiana benthamiana is increased by down-regulation of competing pathways. Biotechnol. J. 2015, 10 (1): 180–189. DOI 10.1002/biot.201400288. No access through UNT Libraries.


1. Hellens, R.,  Mullineaux, P., & Klee, H. (2002). Technical focus: A guide to agrobacterium binary ti vectors. Trends in Plant Science, 5 (10), 446-451. doi: 10.1016/S1360-1385(00)01740-4 Link directly to the article in ScienceDirect, a subscription database.

2. Petrie, J. R., Shrestha, P., Liu, Q., Mansour, M. P., Wood, C. C., Zhou, X-R., . . . Singh, S. P. (2010). Rapid expression of transgenes driven by seed-specific constructs in leaf tissue: DHA production. Plant Methods, 6, 8-13. doi: 10.1186/1746-4811-6-8 Link directly to the open access article.

3. Voinnet, O., Rivas, S., Mestre, P., & Baulcombe, D. (2003). An enhanced transient expression system in plants based on suppression of gene silencing by the p19 protein of tomato bushy stunt virus. The Plant Journal, 33 (5),949-956. doi:  10.1046/j.1365-313X.2003.01676.x   Link directly to the open access article.

4. Selvaraju Kanagarajan, Saraladevi Muthusamy, Anna Gliszczyn´ska, Anneli Lundgren, Peter E. Brodelius (2012) Functional expression and characterization of sesquiterpene synthases from Artemisia annua L. using transient expression system in Nicotiana benthamiana. Plant Cell Rep (2012) 31:1309–1319. DOI

5. O'Maille PE, Chappell J, Noel JP (2006) Biosynthetic potential of sesquiterpene synthases: alternative products of tobacco 5-epi-aristolochene synthase. Arch Biochem Biophys. 448(1-2):73-82.

Subject Librarian

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Erin O'Toole
Willis Library, Room 080

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