In this theme we are developing our understanding of how changes in temperature influence plant and crop development.
We are exploring how plants perceive temperature and how this influences important developmental processes to allow plants to grow and develop in alignment with the seasonal variation that takes place.
We will identify genes and processes which are important in yield formation such as flowering time, pollen, fruit and seed development. We use model plants such as Arabidopsis as well as major field crops such as vegetable Brassicas, oilseed rape and wheat.
We are also investigating why certain processes within plants, such as cell division to create the sex cells, are intolerant of extreme temperature and where evolution has overcome this to give more tolerant plants.
This research will allow us to consider introducing new mechanisms of temperature tolerance into the crops of the future to allow them to cope better with new weather patterns brought about by climate change.
Selected publications from ‘Understanding variation in plant traits’
- Temperature sensing is distributed throughout the regulatory network that controls FLC epigenetic silencing in vernalization – Antoniou-Kourounioti et al. 2018
- VERNALIZATION1 controls developmental responses of winter wheat under high ambient temperatures – Dixon et al. 2019
- Absence of warmth permits epigenetic memory of winter in Arabidopsis – Hepworth et al. 2018
- Temperature Modulates Tissue-Specification Program to Control Fruit Dehiscence in Brassicaceae – Li et al. 2018
- Vernalization and Floral Transition in Autumn Drive Winter Annual Life History in Oilseed Rape – O’Neill et al. 2019
- Circadian regulation of the plant transcriptome under natural conditions – Panter et al. 2019
- Dmc1 is a candidate for temperature tolerance during wheat meiosis – Draeger T, et al. Theor Appl Genet 2019. Among authors: Moore G. PMID 31853574
- Spatio-temporal expression dynamics differ between homologues of flowering time genes in the allopolyploid Brassica napus – Jones DM, et al. Plant J 2018. Among authors: Irwin JA. PMID 29989238
- G-quadruplex structures trigger RNA phase separation – Zhang et al. 2019