Using fluorescence imaging to probe the distribution, delivery and uptake of agrochemicals in plants

Current techniques that allow the agrochemical industry to visualise the movement of compounds, such as radio-labelling, are of low resolution and require the custom synthesis of radio-labelled compounds. The ability to do this on a microscopic scale using unlabelled material would transform the sectors ability to determine the distribution and metabolism of chemicals on a much faster time scale, facilitating a step change in the way chemical design is undertaken. Two significant technical challenges: i) sensitivity of detection and ii) interference from plant auto fluorescence are potential hurdles to the application of using inherent fluorescence characteristics of compounds to monitor their movement through plants.

This project will : i) employ fluorescence imaging techniques to investigate agrochemical uptake and distribution patterns in plants; ii) devise a practical in-vivo imaging/measurement technique and iii) thereby expedite the optimisation, development and discovery of agrochemicals.