Saskia de Fraine

Postgraduate Researcher Genes in the Environment

Saskia is investigating how environmental and circadian signals are integrated in order to regulate transcription from the chloroplast genome.

The communication of information from the nucleus to chloroplasts by sigma factors enables the acclimation of photosynthesis to the changing environment. This increases photosynthetic efficiency and contributes to the circadian regulation of photosynthesis.

The circadian regulation of photosynthesis enhances both fitness and growth, so understanding this signalling pathway may provide information valuable to enhancing crop performance.

Saskia’s focus surrounds using Arabidopsis as an experimental model to understand the events occurring within gene promoters, which are sites of environmental and cellular signal integration.