Genetic Variation in Plant Drought Response Across Vegetative Development

Plant Biology

Erica Lawrence, Penn State University

March 18, 2024 @ 12:15 pm to 01:15 pm

108 Wartik Laboratory
University Park

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Developmental transitions impact ecology and evolution by altering the way plants interact with their environment. Studies of germination and flowering show that developmental timing has significant impacts on plant fitness and performance, but very little attention has been given to the juvenile-to-adult transition: vegetative phase change. My research works to understand how the timing of vegetative phase change, and the developmental phase a plant is in when exposed to abiotic stress, impact the plant’s ability to respond to these stressors. Using natural genetic variation in Arabidopsis thaliana and Sorghum bicolor, I approach these questions from ecophysiological and genomic perspectives to identify traits and genes that contribute to phase-specific differences in stress tolerance and develop a greater understanding of the interactions between plant development and abiotic environment.

About the Speaker:
Dr. Erica Lawrence-Paul is an NSF postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Jesse Lasky’s lab in the Department of Biology. She earned her doctorate at the University of Pennsylvania, studying the ecophysiological significance of the plant developmental transition, vegetative phase change, with a particular focus on photosynthetic and leaf carbon economic traits. Her current work focuses on understanding how natural variation in the timing of vegetative phase change contributes to plant abiotic stress tolerance and local adaption.


Jesse Lasky