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Public lecture to explore solutions to the food challenge
Date:5/25/2010

anticipated increase in temperatures and weather extremes in crop growing areas necessitates the development of crops that are more able to adapt to extremes in environment. Solutions to this challenge include identifying genes that function to provide stress resilience, such as the rice Sub1A gene, which dramatically improves the survival of complete submergence.

"Now that we have the ability to make any rice cultivar submergence tolerant, we want to increase the tolerance," she said. "The goal is to make the plant capable of enduring the stress at different times in its life cycle."

For several years, Bailey-Serres's lab has worked on how plants endure periods of low oxygen. She explained that for a plant, low oxygen stress comes about when the root system is waterlogged or the entire plant is flooded. Specifically, her lab is studying the signal transduction that happens when oxygen levels fall; how change in environment is perceived; and how the plant cell responds to protect itself from the energy crisis that occurs when oxygen levels are limiting.

Bailey-Serres received her doctoral degree from Edinburgh University in 1986. She was a postdoctoral fellow at UC Berkeley from 1986-1990, sponsored by a National Institutes of Health postdoctoral fellowship and a USDA independent postdoctoral research fellowship. She brought her research on plant response to low oxygen stress to UCR in the summer of 1990 as an assistant professor.

She was awarded UCR's 2002 Outstanding Faculty Mentor Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Mentoring Undergraduate Research. She was elected a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in 2005. That year she also established UCR's first National Science Foundation-sponsored Integrative Graduate Education Research and Training (IGERT) Program that facilitates research interactions between biologists, chemists, computer scientists and engineers. In 2008, she held the F.C.
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Contact: Iqbal Pittalwala
iqbal@ucr.edu
951-827-6050
University of California - Riverside
Source:Eurekalert

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