Emily D. 2023 | BASIS Independent Silicon Valley
- Project Title: Exploring Possible Methods of Modifying Biosynthesis Pathway of Limonene to Alter Citrus Flavor
- Basis Independent Advisor: Dr. Karen Allendoerfer
- Internship Location: Aspiring Scholars Distinguished Research Program
- Onsite Mentor: Akira Yamamoto
Limonene is a monoterpenoid that contributes to the odor of citrus fruits and is typically found in citrus and orange peel oil. However, its two isomers, R-limonene and S-limonene, are found in different plants and consequently have different odors. R-limonene is found in oranges and smells citrusy, whereas S-limonene is found in lemons and mints and is often converted into other compounds. Previous literature has shown that mint enzymes will react with R-limonene and form isomers of the original product when incubated with the substrates in buffer. For my senior project at the Aspiring Scholars Directed Research Program, I am testing these mint enzymes to see if they react with R-limonene in oranges when incubated in homogenized oranges and orange juice, and such volatile compounds will be analyzed. Since limonene and many other volatile compounds play an important role in the healthcare and agriculture industry, the novel compounds that are synthesized may be of significance to both field.