How do small groups of cells in microscopic buds turn themselves into the diverse flower and leaf shapes we see around us?
To answer this question we need to know how genes and growth interact to create tissue shapes during development, and how this process varies to produce such a remarkable range of forms.
The Coen lab use a highly integrative approach that combines molecular, genetic, imaging, population, ecological and computational approaches to address this problem, applying them to model systems such as Arabidopsis and Antirrhinum, as well as the model carnivorous plant Utricularia.
The Coen lab was also involved in the 100 trillion miracles work with Professor Cristobal Uauy.
Bradley D., Xu P., Mohorianu I. I., Whibley A., Field D., Tavares H., Couchman M., Copsey L., Carpenter R., Li M., Li Q., Xue Y., Dalmay T., Coen E. (2017)Evolution of flower color pattern through selection on regulatory small RNAs.Science (358)Publisher's version: 0036-8075
Whitewoods C. D., Pinto Goncalves B., Cheng J., Cui M., Kennaway R., Lee K., Bushell C., Yu M., Piao C., Coen E. (2020)Evolution of carnivorous traps from planar leaves through simple shifts in gene expression.Science (367)Publisher's version: 0036-8075
Lee K. J. I., Bushell C., Koide Y., Fozard J. A., Piao C., Yu M., Newman J., Whitewoods C., Avondo J., Kennaway R., Maree S., Cui M., Coen E. (2019)Shaping of a three-dimensional carnivorous trap through modulation of a planar growth mechanism.PLoS Biology (17)Publisher's version: 1544-9173