arabidopsisThe Plant Gene Expression Center (PGEC) conducts fundamental research in plant molecular biology. Researchers are elucidating the signal transduction pathways responsible for the perception of environmental and cellular cues. We are exploring disease resistance, light perception, the circadian clock, vegetative growth and the plant-associated microbiome. Essential genes and the networks within which they operate are elucidated using molecular, genetic and biochemical approaches.

The PGEC is a collaboration of the Agricultural Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Plant & Microbial Biology Department of the University of California, Berkeley. The Center's principal investigators are faculty at UC Berkeley, and research opportunities are available in our laboratories for graduate and undergraduate students.

Welcome to PMB Rotation Students

First year graduate students in the Dept. of Plant and Microbial Biology at UC-Berkeley spend 10 weeks each in 3 different labs, before selecting a home for their thesis project. For the first rotation period, we have 3 students: Snigdha Chatterjee, who was an undergraduate at Syracuse University, is rotating in the Lewis Lab; there are two students rotating with Sarah Hake and Jake Brunkard, Wassim Hage, who was an undergraduate at Univ. Texas, and Nanticha Lutt, who was an undergraduate at UC-Berkeley. Posted 09/18/2017.

Devin Coleman-Derr named Early Career Research Scientist in USDA/ARS

The citation notes: For his pioneering work in epigenetics and the microbiome, and leadership in identifying new directions of research. Click "Read more" for a link to an article about this honor. Posted 09/18/2017.

Quail Lab Paper Published in Nature Communications

Plants monitor their light environment through photoreceptors in that include phytochromes. Transcription factors called PIFs (for phytochrome interacting factors) were known to be phosphorylated as part of the light signaling cascade, but the kinases responsible for this phosphorylation were unknown. Ni et al. (2017) have now identified the responsible kinases. Click "Read more" to read the abstract, and for a link to the publication (open access). Posted 09/18/2017.

Coleman-Derr Lab Awarded Grant from The Conservation, Food & Health Foundation

Cassava is considered one of the world’s five major food crops, vital to the food security of more than half a billion people around the globe. While cassava is resistant to drought and pests, pathogens represent an Achilles Heel for an otherwise hearty crop.The Coleman-Derr lab was awarded $20,000, over two years. They will use metagenomics to investigate the effect of agronomic methods on Cassava health in Uganda. Click "Read more" for details and for a link to the Foundation's Website. Posted 06/01/2017.

Lewis Lab News - New Postdoc, New Publication

Dr. Yuan Chen, previously in the McCormick lab, has joined the Lewis Lab as a postdoctoral fellow. Yuan will investigate immune responses in Brachypodium distachyon, a model grass species, to Pseudomonas syringae infection. Jana Hassan developed a seedling-based assay to assess resistance to Pseudomonas syringae in tomato: Hassan, Jana A., Zhou, Yan-Ming Jane, and Lewis, Jennifer D. (2017). A rapid seedling resistance assay identifies wild tomato lines that are resistant to Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato race 1. Molecular Plant-Microbe Interactions; posted online on 18 May 2017. Click "Read more" to read the Abstract and for a link to the publication. Posted 06/01/2017.

New Rotation Student in Lewis Lab

Ilea Chau, a PMB first year graduate student, is rotating in the Lewis Lab. Ilea was an undergraduate at Duke University. Posted 04/26/2017.

Three PGEC Graduate Students Awarded NSF Graduate Fellowships

Michael Busche, in the Hake Lab, and Heidi Wipf and Alex Styer, both in the Coleman-Derr Lab, were awarded these prestigious 3-year Fellowships. Click "Read more" to learn about their projects. Posted 04/24/2017.

Two Graduate Students join PGEC Labs

Alex Styer will join the Coleman-Derr Lab, and Michael Busche will join the Hake Lab. Alex's undergraduate degree is from Georgetown, and Michael's is from Purdue. Click "Read more" to learn more about their Ph.D. projects. Posted 04/24/2017.


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