Recognizing Plant Cell authors: Lauren Jenkins

Lauren Jenkins, first author of A General Method for Quantification and Discovery of Acyl Groups Attached to Acyl Carrier Proteins in Fatty Acid Metabolism using LC-MS/MS

Current Position: Senior lab technician, Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, St. Louis, Missouri, United States of America

Education: B.S. Biochemistry and Biotechnology, University of Missouri—St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri, United States of America

Non-scientific Interests: hiking, cooking, art, and listening to podcasts

Brief bio: During undergraduate studies at University of Missouri—St. Louis, a biochemistry class piqued my curiosity in the complexity of metabolism. This interest led to an NSF-REU in Dr. Doug Allen’s lab that exposed me to plant metabolism and more generally the plant sciences field. Following the internship, I continued work in the lab part time until graduation and now full time as a senior lab technician before going to graduate school. My studies have included taking a lead role in developing methodology to quantify the absolute levels of acyl-acyl carrier proteins (acyl-ACPs) using liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Plants are unique bio-factories that make the nutrients, fuel, medicines, and materials we rely on daily. I want to understand questions about resource allocation in plants. Understanding the connections between metabolites and biochemical regulation will help us identify, breed, and engineer crops to address sustainability questions.