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[SCAN] Sexual plant reproduction from evolutionary to cellular scale

When Jan 20, 2021
from 12:00 PM to 01:00 PM
Contact Name Rita Abranches
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Title: Sexual plant reproduction from evolutionary to cellular scale

Speaker: Jorg Becker

Abstract: Double fertilization is a hallmark of the life cycle of angiosperms, producing seeds that not only ensure the survival of the species, but also represent our most essential food source. A better understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying sexual plant reproduction in angiosperms is crucial, if we want to overcome fertilization barriers, diminish negative effects of climate fluctuations and enhance crop productivity. Projects in our group focus on plant sperm cell development and fertilization mechanisms, ultimately to provide tools to mitigate the impact of climate change and to manipulate plant reproduction in our favor.

Our primary plant model species to study these processes are the angiosperm Arabidopsis thaliana and the bryophyte Physcomitrium patens. In angiosperms, a pollen tube delivers two sperm cells to the embryo sac to ensure fertilization of the egg and central cell, respectively. In bryophytes on the other hand a free-swimming, flagellated sperm fertilizes an egg cell. Extensive transcriptome data we have obtained for both species allows us to study the evolution of sexual plant reproduction, and thus to distinguish highly conserved reproduction mechanisms from true innovations in angiosperms.

In my first SCAN seminar I will give a broad overview of the past, current and future research projects of the new “Plant Reproduction and Evolution” lab.


ITQB NOVA Virtual Auditorium