Ancheng HUANG
Associate Professor

Dr Ancheng Huang obtained his Ph.D. degree in natural product chemistry at The University of Adelaide in Australia in December 2014. Dr Huang moved to John Innes Centre in UK to carry out post-doc work in natural product biosynthesis under the supervision of Professor Anne Osbourn (FRS) in 2015 after a short post-doc stay with Professor Zhi-hong Jiang (PVC) at the State Key Laboratory of Quality Research in Chinese Medicine in Macau University of Science and Technology. Dr Huang’s research is centered on the interface of plant chemistry and biology, with a particular focus on natural product biosynthesis. We employ multi-disciplinary approaches ranging from chemistry and genetics to bioinformatics to address fundamental questions concerning how and why natural products are made in nature, mechanisms concerning enzyme catalysis and production platforms for high-value natural products using synthetic biology.


Research Interests:
(1) Plant specialized metabolism
(2) Natural product biosynthesis-pathway discovery and elucidation
(3) Synthetic biology and metabolic engineering
(4) Mechanisms concerning enzyme-mediated catalysis and protein engineering
(5) Metabolomics


Professional Experience:
2019.08-present, Associate Professor, Southern University of Science and Technology, China
2015 - 2019, Post-doctoral Scientist, John Innes Centre, UK.
2016 - 2018, Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellow, John Innes Centre, UK.
2015, Post-doctoral fellow, State Key Laboratory of Quality Research in Chinese Medicine, Macau University of Science and Technology, Macau, China.


Educational Background:
2010 - 2014, Ph.D., The University of Adelaide, Australia.
2009 - 2010, Graduate, South China University of Technology.
2005 - 2009, B. E., South China Agricultural University.


Honors & Awards:
2016, Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship, European Commission
2014, Dean’s Commendation for Doctoral Thesis Excellence, The University of Adelaide
2009, HongManTang Outstanding Undergraduates in Research, South China Agricultural University


Selected Publication:
1.Huang, A.C.#; Jiang, T.#; Liu, Y.X.; Bai, Y.C.; Reed, J.; Qu, B; Goossens, A.; Nutzmann, H.-W.; Bai, Y.; Osbourn, A. A specialized metabolic network selectively modulates Arabidopsis root microbiota. Science, 2019, 364(6440): eaau6389. (# Co-first author)
2.Huang, A.C., Osbourn, A. Plant terpenes that mediate below‐ground interactions: prospects for bioengineering terpenoids for plant protection. Pest Management Science, 2019, DOI:10.1002/ps.5410.
3.Huang, A.C.; Hong, Y. J.; Bond, A. D.; Tantillo, D. J.; Osbourn, A. Diverged terpene synthases reroute the carbocation cyclization path towards the formation of unprecedented 6/11/5 and 6/6/7/5 sesterterpene scaffolds. Angewandte Chemie International Edition, 2018, 57(5), 1291-1295.
4.Huang, A.C.; Kautsar S. A..; Hong, Y. J.; Bond, A. D.; Madema M. H.; Tantillo, D. J.; Osbourn, A. Unearthing a sesterterpene biosynthetic repertoire in the Brassicaceae through genome mining reveal convergent evolution. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, U.S.A., 2017, 114(29), E6005-6014.
5.Huang, A.-C.; Sefton, M. A.; Sumby, C. J.; Tiekink, E. R.T.; Taylor, D. K. Mechanistic studies on the autoxidation of -guaiene: The structural diversity of the sesquiterpenoid downstream products. Journal of Natural Products, 2015, 78, 131-145.
6.Huang, A.-C.; Sefton, M. A.; Taylor, D. K. Comparison of the formation of peppery and woody sesquiterpenes derived from -guaiene and -bulnesene under aerial oxidative conditions. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2015, 63(8), 2137-2144
7.Huang, A.-C.; Sumby, C. J.; Tiekink, E. R.T.; Taylor, D. K. Synthesis of guaia-4(5)-en-11-ol, guaia-5(6)-en-11-ol, aciphyllene, 1-epi-melicodenone C and E and other guaiane-type sesquiterpenoids via the diastereoselective epoxidation of guaiol. Journal of Natural Products, 2014, 77(11), 2522-2536.
8.Huang, A.-C.; Burrett, S.; Sefton, M. A.; Taylor, D. K. Production of the pepper aroma compound, (-)-rotundone by aerial oxidation of α-guaiene. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2014, 62 (44), 10809–10815.
9.Huang, A.-C.; Wilde, A.; Ebmeyer, J.; Skouroumounis, G. K.; Taylor, D. K. Examination of the phenolic profile and antioxidant activity of the leaves of the Australian native plant Smilax glyciphylla. Journal of Natural Products, 2013, 76 (10), 1930-1936.
10. Xue Z.; Tan Z.; Huang A.; Zhou Y.; Sun J.; Wang X.; Thimmappa R. B.; Stephenson M. J.; Osbourn A.; Qi X. Identification of key amino acid residues determining product specificity of 2,3-oxidosqualene cyclase in Oryza species. New Phytologist. 2018, 218(3):1076-1088.
11. Owen C.; Patron N. J.; Huang A.; Osbourn A. Harnessing plant metabolic diversity. Current Opinion in Chemical Biology, 2017, 40, 24-30.
12. Nützmann H.-W.; Huang A.; Osbourn A. Plant metabolic clusters-from genetics to genomics. New Phytologist. 2016, 211(3), 711-789.
13. Davies, C; Böttcher, C; Nicholson, E. L.; Burbidge, C. A.; Bastian, S; Harvey, K. E.; Huang, A.-C.; Taylor, D. K.; Boss, P. K. Shiraz wines made from grape berries (Vitis vinifera) delayed in ripening by plant growth regulator treatment have elevated rotundone levels and ‘pepper’ flavor and aroma. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2015, 63(8), 2137-2144.