Under supervision of: Yiyun Li (yiyun.li@wur.nl), Joram Dongus

Aim: Investigating salt-induced pathways controlling root branching.

Salt stress poses a serious threat to plant growth and survival. Salt can induce redistribution of the root system to result in changes in lateral root development. In our previous work we found a mutant showed a salt-induced lateral root phenotype, which may indicate that a pathway other than conventional pathways that regulating root branching exists under salt stress. We are using state-of-the-art transcriptome analyses to elucidate the effect of salt on plant (lateral) root growth and differentiation. In this project you will investigate the candidates in this salt-induced pathway that activates lateral root formation as well as the role of phytohormones in this process.

Are you interested in doing a thesis or internship on the intersection of bioinformatics and molecular biology? Don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Applied techniques:

  • Phenotyping of root system architecture
  • Genotyping
  • Cloning
  • CRISPR mutation
  • Microscopy
  • Data analysis in R/Python

Further reading:

  • Karlova, R., Boer, D., Hayes, S. & Testerink, C. Root plasticity under abiotic stress. Plant Physiol. 187, 1057–1070 (2021), https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/plphys/kiab392.
  • Lavenus, Julien, et al. “Lateral root development in Arabidopsis: fifty shades of auxin.” Trends in plant science 18.8 (2013): 450-458 https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tplants.2013.04.006
  • Banda, Jason, et al. “Lateral root formation in Arabidopsis: a well-ordered LRexit.” Trends in plant science 24.9 (2019): 826-839, doi:10.1016/j.tplants.2019.06.015.