Dr. Philipp Zerbe

Episode 14 Plants’ Use of Diverse Chemistry

Tell me something- before you took a literature class, did you enjoy reading just for the sake of it? And now, do you find yourself identifying motifs, classifying steps in the hero’s journey, or internally (or externally, we don’t judge) commenting on how the color of the rug elevates the mood of a certain scene? Well, we’re about to do that to you, only in this case, we’re gonna tell you everything you need to know about maize, and, maybe, strawberries. Have you heard of Terpenoids? Terpe-WHAT?- you may be asking. Well never fear! On this week’s episode of the ChemTalk podcast, hosts Roxanne Salkeld and Alejandra Valenzuela speak to Dr. Philipp Zerbe, Associate Professor of Plant Biology at UC Davis. Dr. Philipp Zerbe’s research focuses on plant terpenoids and why this field is so important to study. Dr. Zerbe explains how the primary focus of his research lab is to better understand the diversity of chemistry that plants utilize to defend themselves against stress and react to their surroundings. This information can be used to optimize crop yield and formulate medicines. We hope you enjoy! If you would like to know more about Dr. Philipp Zerbe you can check out his research or reach him by email at

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