PostDoc, Department of Biochemistry – Wageningen University About my research My name is Tatyana (Tanya) and I am currently PostDoctoral researcher in the group of Prof Dolf Weijers at Wageningen University. My PhD project was focused on alternative ways of inducing embryogenesis in plants and in particular on suspensor-derived embryogenesis. In addition, I am interested in the plant signaling molecule auxin. The auxin response pathway implicates only three main gene families, among which is the inhibiting Aux/IAA proteins. The Aux/IAA family can be subdivided into two groups, canonical and non-canonical, based on presence or conservation of domains. Strikingly, recent phylogenomic analysis of the nuclear auxin response pathway reveals a deep conservation of non-canonical Aux/IAA (ncIAA), which is present in a single copy in all evolutionary nodes (Mutte, Kato et al., 2018) and which I am investigating.
Femke de Jong, secretary
Postdoc, Plant Cell Biology – University of Amsterdam Project title:The plant PIP2 interactome – Shedding Light onto the Plant’s Response to Heat- and Osmotic Stress About my research After having had postdoc positions in Germany and the UK I am currently at the University of Amsterdam. Here my current project is focusing on finding proteins that interact with the minor signaling lipid phosphatidyl 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2) during heat- and/or osmotic stress in Arabidopsis. Upon experiencing hear- or osmotic stress the levels of PIP2 increase dramatically for attracting PIP2-interacting proteins to the membrane, likely involved in initiating a heat- and/or osmotic stress response. In this project I will be identifying the PIP2 interacting proteins using a PIP2 affinity chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry. Once identified and confirmed of their interaction with PIP2, some of these interacting proteins will be further characterized to find their role in heat- and/or stress response.
Chrysa Pantazopoulou, council member
PostDoc, Plant Ecophysiology – Utrecht University About my research My name is Chrysa Pantazopoulou and I am postdoctoral researcher in plant Ecophysiology group at Utrecht University. My research focuses on different aspects of shade avoidance syndrome (SAS). Previous studies in our lab have shown that the earliest neighbor responses in dense stands of Arabidopsis are induced through touching of leaves and lead to hyponastic (upward) leaf movement. The resulting vertical Arabidopsis’ canopy structure yields light signals that result in typical shade avoidance responses. I investigate the mechanisms that stimulate hyponastic growth and subsequent elongation growth in dense stands.
Mariana A. Silva Artur, council member
PostDoc, Plant Ecophysiology – Utrecht University About my research My major research interest is on how plants survive in dry environments. During my MSc and PhD I investigated genomic, physiological, and molecular responses to desiccation tolerance in orthodox seeds and resurrection plants, and found that during evolution plants developed a powerful toolkit to protect their cells against the damages caused by water loss. Currently I work on investigating one element of this toolkit which is found in the roots of many plant species, the suberized exodermis.
Yang Song, council member
I’m Yang from China. I love meeting people from various research backgrounds and different cultures. I’m doing my postdoc at Plant-Microbe Interaction group in Utrecht University. This is a 2 years project cooperating with HZPC (one of the biggest potato breeding company in Europe) and TU delft. The goal of my project is to find microbes that act as predictors of potato vitalities.