Jing-Ke Weng

Jing-Ke Weng

Associate Professor; Member, Whitehead Institute

Jing-Ke Weng studies metabolic evolution in plants and explores the remarkable plant chemodiversity for new commodity chemicals and medicines.

617-324-4921

Phone

WI-361C

Office

Heather Ferguson

Assistant

617-258-5671

Assistant Phone

Education

  • PhD, 2009, Purdue University
  • BS, 2003, Biotechnology, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China

Research Summary

We probe the origin and evolution of plant metabolism, as well as how plants exploit discrete small molecules to interact with their surrounding environments. We also use plant natural products with specific medicinal properties as chemical probes to query human disorders like metabolic syndromes and protein-misfolding diseases. Ultimately, we hope to elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying the "matrix effect" evident in many traditional herbal remedies.

Awards

  • Beckman Young Investigator Award, 2016
  • Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow, 2016
  • Searle Scholar, 2015
  • Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences, 2014
  • American Society of Plant Biologists Early Career Award, 2014
  • Tansley Medal for Excellence in Plant Science, 2013

Recent Publications

  1. PBS3 and EPS1 Complete Salicylic Acid Biosynthesis from Isochorismate in Arabidopsis. Torrens-Spence, MP, Bobokalonova, A, Carballo, V, Glinkerman, CM, Pluskal, T, Shen, A, Weng, JK. 2019. Mol Plant 12, 1577-1586.
    doi: 10.1016/j.molp.2019.11.005PMID:31760159
  2. Engineering New Branches of the Kynurenine Pathway To Produce Oxo-(2-aminophenyl) and Quinoline Scaffolds in Yeast. Torrens-Spence, MP, Liu, CT, Weng, JK. 2019. ACS Synth Biol , .
    doi: 10.1021/acssynbio.9b00368PMID:31714755
  3. Exploration of icariin analog structure space reveals key features driving potent inhibition of human phosphodiesterase-5. Chau, Y, Li, FS, Levsh, O, Weng, JK. 2019. PLoS ONE 14, e0222803.
    doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0222803PMID:31539416
  4. Independent evolution of rosmarinic acid biosynthesis in two sister families under the Lamiids clade of flowering plants. Levsh, O, Pluskal, T, Carballo, V, Mitchell, AJ, Weng, JK. 2019. J. Biol. Chem. 294, 15193-15205.
    doi: 10.1074/jbc.RA119.010454PMID:31481469
  5. The biosynthetic origin of psychoactive kavalactones in kava. Pluskal, T, Torrens-Spence, MP, Fallon, TR, De Abreu, A, Shi, CH, Weng, JK. 2019. Nat Plants 5, 867-878.
    doi: 10.1038/s41477-019-0474-0PMID:31332312
  6. Repeated evolution of cytochrome P450-mediated spiroketal steroid biosynthesis in plants. Christ, B, Xu, C, Xu, M, Li, FS, Wada, N, Mitchell, AJ, Han, XL, Wen, ML, Fujita, M, Weng, JK et al.. 2019. Nat Commun 10, 3206.
    doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-11286-7PMID:31324795
  7. Production of nonnatural straight-chain amino acid 6-aminocaproate via an artificial iterative carbon-chain-extension cycle. Cheng, J, Hu, G, Xu, Y, Torrens-Spence, MP, Zhou, X, Wang, D, Weng, JK, Wang, Q. 2019. Metab. Eng. 55, 23-32.
    doi: 10.1016/j.ymben.2019.06.009PMID:31220662
  8. The Reference Genome Sequence of Scutellaria baicalensis Provides Insights into the Evolution of Wogonin Biosynthesis. Zhao, Q, Yang, J, Cui, MY, Liu, J, Fang, Y, Yan, M, Qiu, W, Shang, H, Xu, Z, Yidiresi, R et al.. 2019. Mol Plant 12, 935-950.
    doi: 10.1016/j.molp.2019.04.002PMID:30999079
  9. PRX9 and PRX40 Are Extensin Peroxidases Essential for Maintaining Tapetum and Microspore Cell Wall Integrity during Arabidopsis Anther Development. Jacobowitz, JR, Doyle, WC, Weng, JK. 2019. Plant Cell 31, 848-861.
    doi: 10.1105/tpc.18.00907PMID:30886127
  10. Unleashing the Synthetic Power of Plant Oxygenases: From Mechanism to Application. Mitchell, AJ, Weng, JK. 2019. Plant Physiol. 179, 813-829.
    doi: 10.1104/pp.18.01223PMID:30670605
More Publications

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Photo credit: Gretchen Ertl/Whitehead Institute