Grasses like barley have a distinct architecture and we investigate the underlying design principles based on number, size, identity and activity of meristems.
The shoot apical meristem of barley undergoes an early vegetative phase and then transitions to an inflorescence meristem. A number of specialised meristems are formed on the flanks of the very elongated inflorescence meristem, which develop into fertile florets or arrest development without generating a seed. Detailed gene expression analysis shows that the meristems at different positions express very distinct gene sets. We are investigating the core functions of meristems and the differences between meristem types. We use gene editing and targeted gene knockouts to understand gene functions in barley, with the aim to modify and improve barley architecture. Knowledge about meristem functions in Arabidopsis is often used as a starting point to identify related gene functions in barley. However, we discover that there meristems in grasses operate in a distinct manner, and what is true for Arabidopsis is not necessarily true for barley!
We also address how resources such as carbohydrates or amino acids are distributed within the plant. Can we redirect resource allocation within barley in order to generate more productive meristems, and ultimately more seeds?
Dr. Edgar Demesa-Arevalo | Building 26.14 Floor 00 Room 067 | Phone +49 211 81-15963 |
Jan Maika | Building 26.14 Floor 00 Room 061 |
Isaia Vardanega | Building 26.14 Floor 00 Room 069 | Phone +49 211 81-12991 |
Hajer Yousif | Building 26.14 Floor 00 Room 043 | Phone +49 211 81-15818 |