Contact research group leader

Yumiko Sakuragi
Associate Professor
Ph: +45 35 33 33 17

Photosynthetic organisms (plants, algae, cyanobacteria) produce large amounts of polysaccharides. These polysaccharides constitute major parts of the cell wall and extracellular matrices, and are important sources for a wide range of commercial applications (e.g. biofuels, textiles, food and health ingredients, and pharmaceuticals).

Our aims are to gain better understandings of how the biosynthesis of these polysaccharides are regulated at the genetic level and to engineer the photosynthetic cell factories to create valuable polysaccharides with enhanced functions.

We apply a suite of complementary approaches (molecular genetics, transcriptomics, proteomics, NMR, LC/GC-MS) in collaborations with national (Danish) and global partners (EU, USA, India, Japan).

Our group collaborates closely with the groups of Poul Erik Jensen and Mathias Pribil under the common theme ‘Photosynthesis and bioengineering’

Research themes

  • Biological assembly of polysaccharides in growing plant tissues - investigation of the roles of pectin acetylesters in controlling inter-molecular interactions
  • Cell biological mechanisms of pectin biosynthesis - discoveries of the roles of protein-protein interactions in targeting pectin biosynthesis in the Golgi apparatus
  • Carbon allocation towards polysaccharides - exploring how photosynthetic CO2 fixation impacts the partitioning of carbons towards extracellular polysaccharides using cyanobacteria as a model

Group members

For students

Are you interested in doing a project, you can read more about your options in the project database

  • Project database for students

  • Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences have various bachelor and master programs.

  • Read more about the options here
  • Partners and networks