Environmental and Plant Biology
Porter Hall 508
Education: Ph.D., Purdue University 1995
Research Interest: Molecular Biology/Genomics
Plant growth and development with an emphasis on the use of molecular, genetic and genomics tools to study plant responses to environmental stimuli.
Gravity is a constant stimulus governing the orientation of plant growth. In response to changes in the gravity vector, plant stems and roots bend by differential growth. The gravitropic response can be separated into three steps: stimulus perception, signal transduction and asymmetric growth of the responding tissue. We took advantage of a cold effect on the gravity response pathway to select for mutants of Arabidopsis with altered signal transduction. We have identified several gps (gravity persistent signal) mutants at seven independent loci (GPS1 - 7). Physiological and molecular characterization of these mutants is ongoing as is the genomic and proteomic characterization of the GPS response.
Additional projects include collaborative efforts to identify genes involved in the mixed breeding system in Viola and to study evolution using physiological/molecular fingerprints in extinct and extant plants