Eric Goolsby, a former graduate student in the Donovan lab, is now a postdoc at Brown U. with Erika Edwards. His postdoc proposal to NSF has been recommeded for funding: "Identifying the genetic determinants of photosynthetic pathways in Portulaca: development of germplasm and genetic resources." All plants perform one of three types of photosynthesis. Two of these confer substantial stress tolerance, particularly under heat or drought stress. Most crops possess the third, less stress tolerant type of photosynthesis, and it is a goal of many breeding programs to give these crops more stress tolerance by changing the type of photosynthesis they perform. A major roadblock to doing this is a lack of knowledge of the complex genetic control that differentiates the three photosynthesis types. This work uses the unique genus Portulaca, a group of species whose members variously perform all three types of photosynthesis (and even shift among them), to better understand the genetic control of the anatomy and biochemistry underpinning the three types.
Alumnus - Elise Bartelme
Alumna Elise Bartelme teaching a Plant Biology lab course (2014).
Sunflower and Plant Physiology
Sunflower and plant physiology boat selfie
Alumnus - Chelsea Cunard
Alumnus Chelsea Cunard implementing a field experiment studying invasive Microstegium vimineum (2014).
Grad Student - Jess Stephens
Graduate student Jess Stephens with her study species in the genus Sarracenia (2016).
PBIO grad student David Higgins counts down for Grad students Ilkay Doerter, Lauren Eserman, and Jess Stephens to begin the egg-and-spoon race at the Graduate Student Field Day (April, 2015)