THE BIOSYNTHSIS OF QUERCETIN IN BUCKWHEAT
The intriguing question of the chemical mechanisms by means of which the higher plants synthesize the multitude of components found in their tissues, has been the subject of speculation since the beginnings of the systematic study of organic chemistry. Schemes have been devised to account for the synthesis of carbohydrates (1)0 terpenes and isoprenoid compounds (2, 30 4, 5), steroid sapogenins (6), and other classes of compounds. However most of the theories on biogenesis have been based on molecular structure relation-ships or known laboratory reactions and, until recently, direct experimental attack on the problem has been lacking. Several theories have been suggested by many workers regarding the biosynthesis of flavones but here again little direct biochemical work has been carried out. It was on the suggestion of Dr. A. C. Neish that this work, on the biogenesis of quercetin, one of the most widely distributed flavonols in nature, was undertaken. The glycoside rutin, which on hydrolysis yields quercetin, is obtained in relatively large quantities from buckwheat leaves.
Master of Science (M.Sc.)
Pharmacy and Nutrition