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Plant Sciences Program seminar - Prof. Dr. Rüdiger Simon

3/4/2018 11:00 AM - 3/4/2018 12:00 PM
​Abstract:
Organogenesis in plants is based on precise cell fate determination of undifferentiated cells, which are derived from stem cells that reside in meristems. Cell fate determination depends on the position of a cell within the plant body. A number of mechanisms provide positional information to cells or cell populations: (1) plant hormones like auxin establish gradients or local concentration maxima; (2) secreted ligands and membrane associated receptors enables cell-cell signaling between adjacent cell layers; (3) transcription factors can act non-cell autonomously to integrate cellular responses, and (4) long range communication takes place by transport of signals between cells through plasmodesmata. 
Our current understanding is that these mechanisms act in a concerted manner to govern plant development. I will report on our most recent results on receptor kinase signaling​ pathways that control the growth and maintenance of meristems. Using a toolbox of fluorescence imaging techniques in planta, we studied the dynamics of receptor assembly into larger complexes at distinct regions of the plasmamembranes upon the perception of their specific ligands. Furthermore, we found that alterations of receptor expression levels can have profound developmental consequences. Finally, I will try to link aspects of peptide-receptor and hormonal signaling pathways. 
Work in the lab was supported by CEPLAS (DFG, EXC1028) and CRC1208.

Bio:
Rüdiger Simon received his Diploma in Biology and his PhD from the University of Cologne under guidance by Peter Starlinger, working on maize transposable elements and tomato meristem development. He joined Enrico Coen´s lab at the John Innes Institute in Norwich from 1991 to 1993 studying flower development, then worked with Martin Ganal at the IPK in Gatersleben from 1993 to 1994 to investigate tomato resistance against nematodes, and with George Coupland at the John Innes Centre from 1994 to 1996 to study flowering time control genes. In 1996 he started an independent group at the University of Cologne, working on meristem development in Arabidopsis, and in 2002 he moved to the Heinrich-Heine University (HHU) in Düsseldorf as professor for developmental genetics. He is elected Head of the Department of Biology, member of the Cluster of Excellence on Plant Sciences and chair of the Center for Advanced Imaging at the HHU.