My research has been focused on the regulation, at transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels, of secondary cell walls biosynthesis, in woody plants. Cell walls are essential cellular components in living plants, responsible for a number of critical functions, including providing shape to many different cell types, forming the interface between adjacent cells, having important roles in inter-cellular communication, playing an important role in plant-microbe interactions and in perception and plant adjustment to environment stress conditions.
My proposition for Plant Integrative Biology Department relies on an System Biology approach based on modeling of gene regulatory networks. My main focus will be on cell wall biosynthesis, and their, variability under developmental, abiotic and biotic stress, towards a more productive and competitive crops for production of safer food, feed, biomolecules, and bioenergy raw materials. To reach these objectives, a multidisciplinary approach, integrating genomics, transcriptomic, proteomics, and metabolomics, plant physiology, biomathematics and bioinformatics and biotechnology, high-throughput phenotypic characterization, will be followed to link bench research to the field research, and plant models to crops.
Three starting interconnected sub-topics are now proposed. a) Regulation of the cell wall biosynthesis and plant development under biotic and abiotic stresses in Legumes and Cereals; b) Plant cell wall engineering: applications in biofuel production and improved human health; c) the role of cell walls during the seed vernalization and in seed priming in crop plants.
1. Myburg, Alexander A.; Grattapaglia, Dario; Tuskan, Gerald A.; et al. (2014): The genome of Eucalyptus grandis. Nature Volume: 510 Issue: 7505 Pages: 356- , DOI: 10.1038/nature13308
2. Carocha, Victor; Soler, Marcal; Hefer, Charles; et al.(2015) Genome-wide analysis of the lignin toolbox of Eucalyptus grandis. New Phytologist Volume: 206 Issue: 4 Pages: 1297- , DOI: 10.1111/nph.13313
3. Pereira-Leal, Jose B.; Abreu, Isabel A.; Alabca, Claudia S.; et al: (2014) A comprehensive assessment of the transcriptome of cork oak (Quercus suber) through EST sequencing. Bmc Genomics Volume: 15 , DOI: 10.1186/1471-2164-15-371
4. Paiva, Jorge A. P.; Prat, Elisa; Vautrin, Sonia; et al.(2011) Advancing Eucalyptus genomics: identification and sequencing of lignin biosynthesis genes from deep-coverage BAC libraries: Bmc Genomics Volume: 12 DOI: 10.1186/1471-2164-12-137