In-Cheol JANG, Ph.D, Principal Investigator

Dr In-Cheol Jang obtained his PhD from Myongji University in Korea, where he studied on rice biotechnology. He joined Prof. Nam-Hai Chua’s lab at the Rockefeller University in 2003 first as a post-doctoral fellow (2003-2008) and subsequently as a research associate (2008-2012), where he investigated and unravelled mechanisms regulating light signalling in Arabidopsis. He was awarded a fellowship from the Human Frontier Science Program (HFSP; 2004-2007). He joined the Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory as a Principal Investigator in 2012 and serves as an Adjunct Assistant Professor in Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore.

You may wish to contact Dr In-Cheol JANG at:
Tel:(65) 6872 7409 or 6872 7093 (lab)
Email: : jangi@tll.org.sg

 

For information on PhD studies at TLL, click HERE

Research Interests

  1. Light signaling in plants
  2. Plant secondary metabolism/metabolites
  3. Functional genomics in non-model plants
  4. Plant metabolic engineering

Research Projects

Light signaling in plants

As sessile and photo-autotrophic organisms, plants use light not only as an energy source for photosynthesis but also as an environmental cue to provide them with positional information to adjust and adapt their physiological responses throughout their life cycle. Light regulates many developmental events throughout the plant life cycle, which include seed germination, seedling de-etiolation, leaf expansion, stem elongation, shade avoidance, circadian rhythms, and flowering time etc. Shade avoidance syndrome is a morphological and physiological response that plants display when they are subjected to the shade of another plant, such as when they are grown in high densities. These responses include stem and petiole elongation, early flowering, and reduced leaf development, which results in loss of crop or vegetable yield. My lab’s research focuses on the roles of phytohormones in multiple shade avoidance responses.

Plant secondary metabolism/metabolites

Plants produce a large group of secondary metabolites that have multiple ecological functions, including defense against herbivores and pathogens as well as for pollinator attraction. Plant secondary metabolites are mainly composed of terpenoids, phenylpropanoids/benzenoids, and volatile fatty acid derivatives, which are derived from different biosynthetic routes in plants. Among them, terpenoids are the primary constituents of essential oils of many types of aromatic plants and flowers, which are widely used in the pharmaceutical and food industries as medicines, flavor enhancers and fragrances. The diversity of plant terpenoids has stimulated broad systems biology approaches to identify the pathways/genes involved in their biosynthesis. My lab integrates metabolome and transcriptome analysis of aromatic plants/flowers to unravel biosynthetic pathways for terpenoids. Moreover, our understanding of the biosynthetic pathways of terpenoids has facilitated the enhanced production of high-value terpenoids in plant.

Stevia research

Health concerns regarding the consumption of artificial sweeteners have triggered recent interest in natural non-caloric sweeteners, one of which is derived from the plant Stevia. Stevia is an industrial crop that produces steviol glycosides in their leaves, a natural and zero-calorie sweetener that is 200 to 300 times sweeter than cane sugar. There has been increasing interest in Stevia and rapid growth of the Stevia market, as rising levels of obesity and diabetes are encouraging consumers to make healthier food choices.

My lab develops platform technologies and conducts research and development on stevia plant to identify novel genes involved in the biosynthetic pathway of steviol glycosides, with the aim of establishing a platform for sustainable and cost-effective production of steviol glycosides to meet global demands.