The central objective of research in the GRO Institute Strategic Programme (ISP) is to generate new fundamental knowledge of how plants grow.
To do this, researchers use a unique blend of curiosity-driven and challenge-driven research.
This knowledge is needed to improve the yield and adaptability of crop plants within a diverse and sustainable environment.
The Institute Strategic Programme on Growth and Underpinning Yield (GRO)
Seeds are dispersed from oil-seed rape pods by shattering of the pod. Shattering of seed pods before harvest leads to major losses for farmers. By understanding the genetic programmes controlling pod development, we can significantly reduce pod shatter.
Cell division activity in the shot apical meristem, which gives rise to most aerial tissues of plants.
The GRO programme uses mathematical modelling to show that variation in two growth parameters can generate different leaf shapes.
A popular model organism in plant biology, Arabidopsis is used by GRO researchers looking to investigate plant traits at a molecular level.
Early Stage Development
Researchers in GRO use imaging methods such as Optical Projection Tomography (OPT) to look at small scale 3D structures. This example shows the early stages of barley spike development.
Brassica research forms a fundamental part of the work undertaken by GRO scientists.
GRO researchers use a diverse range of techniques to investigate growth and development, including tracking dividing cells in a growing Arabidopsis leaf. These novel techniques allow us to gain new insights into how growth is controlled genetically.