The Origin of Plant Chemodiversity - Conceptual and Empirical InsightsSubmit Manuscript on this topic
The number of all metabolites in the plant kingdom is estimated over 1,000,000. Such huge chemodiversity is the result of evolution of plants as sessile organisms in the biosphere. As a benefit gained from such struggle for life, unintendedly, plants become excellent sources of chemical compounds in our daily lives, used as drugs, flavors, cosmetics, health-promoting food and industrial raw materials. When one sees the huge variety of plant chemicals, everyone is fascinated with their beauty and then asks the question on the origin of plant chemodiversity - how such a huge chemodiversity is generated? – why plants generate such chemodiversity? These are the questions being addressed for a long term since the study on plant natural products emerged; however, they are not completely answered yet.
Recent advancements in technology of genomics and related research areas, such as metabolomics, bioinformatics, comparative genomics, genome editing and molecular evolution, remarkably accelerate our understanding on the origin of plant chemodiversity. Furthermore, not only addressing curiosity-driven questions, through application of fundamental knowledges obtained, this research area could largely contribute to realize our sustainable society, which is recently aimed by United Nations as 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals.