Date of Defense


Date of Graduation



Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Christine Byrd-Jacobs

Second Advisor

Lin Bao


Vestaron currently uses an established and reliable peptide discovery and development research platform, particularly for the development of insecticidal peptides. The platform centers around a proprietary yeast expression system for peptide production (“Vestaron’s yeast expression system"). Vestaron aims to expand their portfolio and provide clean solutions in crop protection using peptide technologies to protect plants not only from insect pests but also microbial pests including phytopathogenic fungi and bacteria. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been studied extensively. However, it is questionable whether Vestaron’s yeast expression system can express AMPs heterologously. In this study, thirteen promising antimicrobial peptides were selected from literature reports to test the ability of Vestaron’s yeast expression system to heterologously express AMPs which maintained their antimicrobial activities. Five out of the thirteen AMPs were successfully expressed in the Vestaron yeast expression system. They all showed antibacterial activities against some agriculturally important phytopathogenic bacterial species. From this research, it has been confirmed that the Vestaron yeast expression system is usable for AMP heterologous expression. A few lead candidates for possible commercialization for plant health solutions have been identified from this program.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Open Access

Thesis_Presentation-SMC-final.pdf (7989 kB)
Defense Presentation

Publication License DR IC50.pdf (58 kB)
Publication License 1

Publication License project pipeline.pdf (340 kB)
Publication License 2

Publication License purification process (2).pdf (195 kB)
Publication License 3