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Jeff Schell prize

last modified Jul 24, 2013 01:50 PM

Arun Sampathkumar has been awarded the prestigious € 2,500 Jeff Schell prize for outstanding research undertaken during his PhD at The Max Planck Institute for Molecular Plant Physiology. Arun investigated the biosynthesis of cell walls during his PhD and was the lead author on the paper ‘Live cell imaging reveals functional association between actin filaments and microtubules in Arabidopsis’.

In plant cells, actin and microtubule cytoskeleton are involved in several essential functions including cellular growth and morphogenesis. The actin filaments and microtubules were formerly viewed as two distinct networks with separate functions but were found to cooperate in yeast and animal cells. However, associations between these two essential components in live plants cells had not been explored.

The paper reported unprecedented evidence of dynamic interaction between these two components and attracted widespread attention when it was published in The Plant Cell. The paper was selected as the best publication of the month by leading cell biologists for August 2011. The Jeff Schell prize was awarded to Arun in recognition of this article and other research he undertook during his PhD.

The press release (in German) issued by the Max Planck Institute can be found here.