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Sainsbury Laboratory

Dr James Locke

Cambridge appoints Professor of Quantitative Plant Development

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.

Dr Locke, who is currently Associate Director and Group Leader at the Sainsbury Laboratory Cambridge University (SLCU), will take up his new post on 1 August 2023.

The new professorship comes with extensive core funding and has been made possible through generous funding from The Gatsby Charitable Foundation. The position will be based at SLCU.

Dr Locke joined SLCU in 2012 and has built an international reputation in the field of quantitative biology combining modelling and experimental methods to study the gene regulatory dynamics underlying plant development at the single-cell level.

He is planning to expand his research team’s work into examining the functions and mechanisms of dynamic gene regulation in plants and to explore whether gene expression variability confers survival advantages in changeable environments.

SLCU Director Professor Henrik Jönsson said: “James has been a highly engaged and collegial group leader since the early years when SLCU was established. He was one of the first people to define the research field of modelling plant development based on quantitative data and has been driving the development of the field ever since. We are extremely grateful that he now has been elected to the Professorship of Quantitative Plant Development."

Read more about the Locke Group research