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Read more at: Investigating how cell division influences decision-making in plants
Confocal microscopy images of an Arabidopsis thaliana hypocotyl where localised sectors of over expressing CYCD3:1 gene, a dominant driver of the G1/S transition in the cell cycle induce cell division and changes cell junctions. Image by Mahwish Ejaz.

Investigating how cell division influences decision-making in plants

Confocal microscopy image showing an Arabidopsis thaliana seedling that has been heat shocked to induce cell division in the hypocotyl . Image by Mahwish Ejaz. Investigating how cell division influences decision-making in plants SLCU researchers Sarah Robinson and James Locke are joining forces to explore a long-debated...


Read more at: Identifying the master regulators of photosynthetic cell identity
Cross section of an Arabidopsis thaliana leaf showing the two layers of photosynthetic tissue – the palisade (more tightly packed cells in upper half) and spongy mesophyll (randomly spaced irregular shaped cells in lower half). Image by Emilio Aldorino.

Identifying the master regulators of photosynthetic cell identity

Cross section of an Arabidopsis thaliana leaf showing the two layers of photosynthetic tissue – the palisade (more tightly packed cells in upper half) and spongy mesophyll (randomly spaced irregular shaped cells in lower half). Image by Emilio Aldorino. Identifying the master regulators of photosynthetic cell identity SLCU...


Read more at: How new plant cell walls change their mechanical properties after cell division
Atomic force microscopy time course on the imaged cells. Plots of the stiffness and contact point maps for the dividing cells at different HAD (24 HAD and 48 HAD) for M. polymorpha. (Scale bar, 20 m.)

How new plant cell walls change their mechanical properties after cell division

Scientists reveal new plant cell walls can have significantly different mechanical properties compared to surrounding parental cell walls, enabling cells to change their local shape and influence the growth of plant organs.


Read more at: Conversations with plants: Can we provide plants with advance warning of impending dangers?
Schematic representation of the Highlighter system and function

Conversations with plants: Can we provide plants with advance warning of impending dangers?

Highlighter provides target gene control at cellular resolution. The Jones team implemented the system to demonstrate optogenetic control over plant immunity and pigment production through modulation of the spectral composition of broadband visible (white) light.


Read more at: Wood modification boosts biomass conversion
Model of poplar macrofibril assembly without (left) and with callose deposition (right).

Wood modification boosts biomass conversion

By adding a naturally-occurring polymer that makes wood more porous, scientists have engineered trees easier to disassemble into simpler building blocks.


Read more at: Cambridge plant scientists receive BBSRC funding to combat barley root diseases
Close-up of barley in field

Cambridge plant scientists receive BBSRC funding to combat barley root diseases

Funding to advance strategy that promises long-lasting disease resistance against multiple root rot pathogens in barley Sainsbury Laboratory Cambridge University (SLCU) has received funding from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) to advance fundamental research to develop broad root disease...


Read more at: Dry days trigger leaves to send a surprising growth signal telling roots to keep growing
A protein structure model of the ABACUS2 biosensor made by the Jones lab to detect the plant hormone ABA

Dry days trigger leaves to send a surprising growth signal telling roots to keep growing

Scientists at the Sainsbury Laboratory Cambridge University (SLCU) have discovered a new molecular signalling pathway, triggered when leaves are exposed to low humidity, that ensures plant roots keep growing towards water.


Read more at: Mechanical interactions between cell layers control growth in the stems of two wildly different plant species
Confocal image of Arabiopsis seedling with cracks. Image by James Fitzsimons.

Mechanical interactions between cell layers control growth in the stems of two wildly different plant species

Confocal image of Arabiopsis hypocotyl treated with brassinosteroid inhibitor. The seedling shows cracks appearing in the epidermis. Image by James Fitzsimons. Internal twists in a mutant carnivorous plant reveal how genes control growth coordination via tissue mechanics An aquatic carnivorous plant has helped to explain...


Read more at: Professor of Quantitative Plant Development appointed
Dr James Locke

Professor of Quantitative Plant Development appointed

Dr James Locke has been appointed as the Professor of Quantitative Plant Development at the University of Cambridge, a new single tenure professorship that will build on the University’s strengths in plant science research.


Read more at: Festival of Plants 2023
Carlos Lugo Vélez, Eashan Saikia and François Nédélec demonstrating their cytoskeleton simulation game Bugtiply

Festival of Plants 2023

Join the Sainsbury Laboratory Cambridge University (SLCU) at this year's Festival of Plants on Saturday 10 June 10:00 - 17:00. The Cambridge University Botanic Garden's annual Festival of Plants is a day for exploring the wonderful world of plants