About the lab
The research focused on medicinal plants, their bio-active secondary metabolites and its use in a food chain, plant protection and medicine. the laboratory has facilities for microbial analysis, separation (SFE, LC, GC) and identification of natural substances (MS, NMR, MALDI).
Featured projects (1)
Infrastructure for Promoting Metrology in Food and Nutrition High-level metrology services in food and nutrition for the enhancement of food quality and safety METROFOOD-CZ is Czech national node of METROFOOD-RI METROFOOD-CZ will provide services to different categories of users: researchers / academics, food control agencies and inspectors, food merchants, consumers and the general public.
Featured research (2)
In temperate climates, honey bee workers of the species Apis mellifera have different lifespans depending on the seasonal phenotype: summer bees (short lifespan) and winter bees (long lifespan). Many studies have revealed the biochemical parameters involved in the lifespan differentiation of summer and winter bees. However, comprehensive information regarding the metabolic changes occurring in their bodies between the two is limited. This study used proton nuclear magnetic resonance (1H NMR) spectroscopy to analyze the metabolic differences between summer and winter bees of the same age. The multivariate analysis showed that summer and winter bees could be distinguished based on their metabolic profiles. Among the 36 metabolites found, 28 metabolites have displayed significant changes from summer to winter bees. Compared to summer bees, trehalose in winter bees showed 1.9 times higher concentration, and all amino acids except for proline and alanine showed decreased patterns. We have also detected an unknown compound, with a CH3 singlet at 2.83 ppm, which is a potential biomarker that is about 13 times higher in summer bees. Our results show that the metabolites in summer and winter bees have distinctive characteristics; this information could provide new insights and support further studies on honey bee longevity and overwintering.
Fungal contamination in stored food grains is a global concern and affects food economics and human and animal health. It is clear that there is a need to develop new technologies with improved performances that are also eco-friendly in nature. Due to the bioactivity of essential oils (EOs) in the vapor phase, their low toxicity for humans, and their biodegradability and antifungal properties, EOs could be a suitable solution. In this study, we explored the potential of thyme, oregano, lemongrass, clove, and cajeput EOs in the vapor phase. For 17 days, inhibitory activity was assessed against five strains of postharvest pathogens—Aspergillus spp., Fusarium s. l. spp., and Penicilliumochrochloron—isolated from cereal grains. A modified disc volatilization method was used, which is more effective in comparison to traditional screening methods. Three concentrations were tested (250, 125, and 62.5 μL/L). The two highest concentrations resulted in complete inhibition of fungal growth; however, even 62.5 μL/L showed a significant antifungal effect. The efficiency of EOs followed this order: thyme > oregano > lemongrass > clove > cajeput. From our findings, it appears that the use of EOs vapors is a better option not only for laboratory experiments, but for subsequent practice.