Banana (Musa spp.) Metabolomics Analysis

Banana (Musa spp.) Metabolomics Analysis

Service Details Case Study

What is Banana (Musa spp.)?

Musa spp., commonly known as bananas, belong to the genus Musa. This genus encompasses a wide variety of species and cultivars, each with its unique genetic makeup and metabolic characteristics. Analyzing Musa spp. involves studying the diverse range of banana species and their metabolites. Musa spp. exhibit remarkable diversity, ranging from wild species to cultivated varieties. Taxonomically, they are classified into several sections and species, including Musa acuminata (A genome), Musa balbisiana (B genome), and their hybrid combinations. The diversity within Musa spp. necessitates a comprehensive approach to metabolomics analysis.

Banana (Musa spp.) Metabolism

Metabolic Pathways in Musa spp.

Complex Interplay: Within Musa spp., a complex interplay of metabolic pathways governs various physiological processes. These pathways encompass both primary metabolism, such as glycolysis and the citric acid cycle, and secondary metabolism, which involves the production of specialized metabolites, including phenolics, alkaloids, and terpenoids. These pathways collectively shape the growth, development, and responses of Musa spp. to environmental stimuli.

Primary Metabolism: Central to Musa spp. metabolism is primary metabolism, which includes the conversion of sugars, amino acids, and lipids to produce energy and essential building blocks for growth. Understanding these core metabolic processes provides insights into the energy dynamics and resource allocation within the plant.

Secondary Metabolism: The secondary metabolism in Musa spp. encompasses the biosynthesis of diverse phytochemicals. This aspect of metabolism contributes to the unique flavor, aroma, and potential health benefits of bananas. Phenolics, flavonoids, and polyphenols are among the secondary metabolites that play a crucial role in the banana's nutritional and health-promoting qualities.

Nutritional Metabolism in Bananas

Rich Nutritional Profile: Bananas are not only beloved for their taste but also for their nutritional richness. Metabolomics analysis unveils the quantitative composition of essential nutrients within Musa spp.:

Sugars: Bananas are renowned for their high sugar content, primarily in the form of glucose, fructose, and sucrose. These sugars serve as an immediate energy source for consumers.

Vitamins: Musa spp. are a source of vitamins, including vitamin C (ascorbic acid), vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), and folate (vitamin B9). These vitamins are vital for various physiological functions in the human body.

Minerals: Bananas contain essential minerals such as potassium, magnesium, and manganese, contributing to their nutritional value.

Phytochemical Profiling

Health-Promoting Phytochemicals: Beyond their nutritional aspects, Musa spp. harbor a treasure trove of phytochemicals with potential health benefits. Metabolomics profiling allows us to explore these compounds:

Antioxidants: Bananas contain antioxidants like dopamine and catecholamines, which combat oxidative stress and may contribute to overall health.

Flavonoids: The presence of flavonoids, including quercetin and kaempferol, suggests potential anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

Polyphenols: Polyphenolic compounds in bananas have been associated with cardiovascular health and other health-promoting effects.

Banana Metabolomics Analysis Projects by Creative Proteomics

Metabolite Profiling: Identify and quantify a wide range of metabolites in banana tissues. This will include sugars, organic acids, amino acids, and other key compounds involved in banana metabolism.

Pathway Analysis: Conduct pathway analysis to elucidate the metabolic pathways involved in banana growth and development. This will help in understanding how different metabolites are interconnected and regulated.

Stress Response: Investigate the banana plant's response to environmental stressors such as diseases, pests, and adverse weather conditions. This will provide insights into the plant's adaptive mechanisms.

Comparative Metabolomics: Analyze differences in banana metabolism across different varieties, ripening stages, or growing conditions. This information can guide breeding and cultivation strategies.

Quality Assessment: Assessing the quality of bananas by examining the levels of metabolites responsible for flavor, aroma, and nutritional value.

Customized Solutions: At Creative Proteomics, we understand that each banana metabolism analysis project may have unique requirements. We offer customized solutions to meet your specific research objectives.

Banana Metabolomics Analysis Techniques

Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (LC-MS)

At Creative Proteomics, we employ LC-MS as a cornerstone technique in banana metabolomics analysis. LC-MS combines the separation capabilities of liquid chromatography with the high sensitivity and specificity of mass spectrometry, allowing us to identify and quantify a wide range of metabolites in banana samples.

  • Instrument Model: We utilize state-of-the-art LC-MS systems, such as the Agilent 1290 Infinity II LC System coupled with the Agilent 6545 Q-TOF Mass Spectrometer. This powerful combination offers exceptional resolution and mass accuracy, enabling us to achieve unparalleled results in banana metabolite profiling.

Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS)

This technique excels in the analysis of volatile and semi-volatile compounds present in banana samples, providing a comprehensive view of the fruit's metabolic landscape.

  • Instrument Model: Creative Proteomics employs the Agilent 7890B Gas Chromatograph in tandem with the Agilent 5977A Mass Selective Detector for GC-MS analysis. This setup ensures precise identification and quantification of banana metabolites with exceptional sensitivity.

Workflow for Metabolomics ServiceWorkflow for Metabolomics Service

Applications of Metabolomics Analysis in Musa spp. Research

Quality Enhancement: Enhance banana and plantain quality through in-depth metabolite analysis, optimizing flavor, aroma, and nutritional attributes.

Ripening Studies: Gain a deep understanding of ripening processes to extend shelf life and maximize post-harvest management.

Stress Response Evaluation: Investigate how Musa spp. respond to environmental stressors, facilitating the development of resilient crops.

Phytochemical Profiling: Explore the health benefits of Musa spp. by quantifying beneficial compounds and phytochemicals.

Pathway Mapping: Visualize metabolic pathways specific to Musa spp., uncovering their inner workings.

Comparative Analysis: Compare different Musa spp. varieties to identify traits associated with superior performance.

Genetic Engineering Support: Facilitate genetic engineering with insights into metabolic changes resulting from modifications.

Disease Detection: Early diagnosis of diseases affecting Musa spp. to safeguard your crops.

Nutritional Assessment: Determine the nutritional content of Musa spp. varieties for dietary and nutritional studies.

Post-Harvest Management: Develop effective preservation and storage techniques for extended shelf life.

Sample Requirements for Banana Metabolomics

Sample Type Tissue/Component Quantity
Fresh Banana Fruit Pulp 100-200g
Peel 50-100g
Banana Leaves Whole leaves 50-100g
Leaf segments 20-30g
Banana Roots Whole roots 50-100g
Root segments 20-30g
Banana Juice Fresh juice 10-20mL
Banana Pseudostem Cross-section 20-30g
Tissue samples 10-20g

Case. Integrated Transcriptomic, Proteomic, and Metabolomic Analysis Reveals Molecular Mechanisms of Banana Peel Ripening


Banana is a climacteric fruit with complex ripening processes that significantly impact its quality attributes, including texture, aroma, and flavor. Understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying banana peel ripening is crucial for postharvest fruit management and quality control. This study aimed to comprehensively investigate the genetic, proteomic, and metabolic changes occurring during banana peel ripening.


The study focused on banana peel tissue, specifically examining the ripening stages of banana fruit. The analysis covered four distinct ripening stages: P1, P2, P3, and P4.

Technological Methods

Transcriptomic Analysis (RNA-Seq):

RNA Sequencing (RNA-Seq): RNA-Seq is a high-throughput sequencing technique used to profile gene expression at the transcript level. It provides information about which genes are actively transcribed and their abundance in a given sample.

Sample Preparation: Banana peel samples at four different ripening stages (P1, P2, P3, and P4) were collected. Total RNA was extracted from these samples.

Sequencing and Data Analysis: The extracted RNA was sequenced using next-generation sequencing technology. The resulting RNA-Seq data allowed researchers to identify and quantify the expression of genes in banana peel at various ripening stages. This data was crucial for understanding how gene expression patterns change during ripening.

Proteomic Analysis (Mass Spectrometry):

Mass Spectrometry: Mass spectrometry is a powerful analytical technique used to identify and quantify proteins in a sample. It measures the mass-to-charge ratios of ions, allowing for protein identification based on their unique mass spectra.

Sample Preparation: Banana peel samples corresponding to the four ripening stages were used for proteomic analysis. Proteins were extracted from these samples.

Mass Spectrometry Analysis: The extracted proteins were subjected to mass spectrometry analysis, which involved ionizing the proteins and measuring their mass-to-charge ratios. This analysis identified the proteins present in the samples.

Data Interpretation: The mass spectrometry data provided information about the identity and relative abundance of proteins in banana peel during ripening. Researchers could identify which proteins were differentially expressed at different stages of ripening, shedding light on the proteomic changes occurring during this process.

Metabolomic Analysis:

Metabolomics: Metabolomics is the study of small molecules (metabolites) in biological samples. It aims to identify and quantify metabolites to understand metabolic pathways and changes in metabolite profiles.

Sample Preparation: Banana peel samples from the four ripening stages were prepared for metabolomic analysis. Metabolites were extracted from these samples.

Metabolite Profiling: Various techniques such as liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) were likely used to analyze the metabolites in the samples.

Data Analysis: Metabolomic data provided information about the types and quantities of metabolites present in banana peel during ripening. This allowed researchers to identify key metabolites associated with aroma, flavor, and other biochemical changes.

Additional Sub-Analyses:

Beyond the omics techniques, the study likely involved sub-analyses focusing on specific aspects of banana peel ripening. For instance, analyses of genes related to cell wall degradation, enzymes involved in volatile compound synthesis, and proteins associated with protein modification and energy metabolism were conducted to gain deeper insights into these processes.


Transcription Factors: ERF and bHLH transcription factor families were prominently differentially expressed during banana peel ripening, suggesting their roles in regulation.

Hormone Signaling: Hormone signaling, particularly ethylene and auxin, played significant roles in banana ripening, with ethylene receptor genes and auxin signaling-related genes showing differential expression.

Cell Wall Degradation: Enzymes involved in pectin degradation, such as PG, PE, and PL, exhibited dynamic expression patterns, highlighting their collaborative action during pectin depolymerization.

Volatile Compound Synthesis: The synthesis of volatile compounds, including esters and alcohols, was observed, with genes related to precursor production and synthesis up-regulated.

Protein Modification and Energy Metabolism: Protein modification processes, including chaperone proteins (Hsps) and the ubiquitin-proteasome system, played roles in protein folding and degradation. Energy metabolism revealed anaerobic respiration as the dominant process, with glycolysis contributing to volatile compound synthesis, while oxidative phosphorylation exhibited reduced efficiency.

(A) Principal component analysis of differentially accumulated volatile compounds in the peel of banana fruit at different stages of ripening. (B) Classification of differentially accumulated volatile compounds in the peel of banana fruit at different stages of ripening.(A) Principal component analysis of differentially accumulated volatile compounds in the peel of banana fruit at different stages of ripening. (B) Classification of differentially accumulated volatile compounds in the peel of banana fruit at different stages of ripening.


  1. Yun, Ze, et al. "Integrated transcriptomic, proteomic, and metabolomics analysis reveals peel ripening of harvested banana under natural condition." Biomolecules 9.5 (2019): 167.