Eye-plant coordination

Plants are sun worshippers and shade-avoidant. As soon as a leaf ‘sees’ shade, it either points its tip up, has the petiole grow further towards the light, or does a bit of both. We teamed up with  researchers from Wageningen to decipher how plants coordinate between light detection (“eye) and response of the plant itself, which involves surprising insights. Our joint results were published in the scientific journal PNAS on 26 June with our PhD students Chrysa Pantazopoulou and Franca Bongers as lead authors.

Read the full UU news story here
The paper can be found on the PNAS website

Model-canopy LocalFr-Pierik

3D Computational Arabidopsis model                             Local light quality manipulation

PhD Graduation

Franca Bongers successfully defended her PhD thesis “How virtual shade sheds light on plant plasticity” at Wageningen University (WUR). The project was a collaboration between Niels Anten, Jochem Evers (both WUR) & Ronald Pierik (UU). It combined our expertises on computational modeling, shade avoidance and game-theory.  Check out our papers from this project so far:
PNAS, 2017: http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2017/06/21/1702275114.abstract
New Phytologist 2014: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/nph.13041/abstract

FJBongers-thesis