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Research Abstracts Online
January - December 2011

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University of Minnesota Twin Cities
College of Biological Sciences
College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences
Department of Plant Biology

PI: Kathryn A. VandenBosch, Associate Fellow

Plant x Microbe Interactions and Regulation of Cell Wall Growth and Composition in Nitrogen Fixing Biomass Crops in Minnesota

Plants use many defense strategies against microbes and predators, including the activation of defensin genes to produce antimicrobial proteins. Plant cell wall characteristics strongly affect the availability of cellulose-derived sugar for fermentation. These researchers use two plant model systems, Arabidopsis and Medicago, and a nitrogen-fixing shrub native to Minnesota (Alnus incana subsp. rugosa) to study traits important to plant cell wall biosynthesis and plant-microbe interactions. They use bioinformatics and functional genomics approaches for analyzing plant gene expression, among others.

Group Members

Mesfin Tesfaye Gebeyaw, Research Associate
Sumitha Nallu, Graduate Student