UMass Boston News

Spring 2017 Biology Seminar Series: Beronda Montgomery

Graph shows dark and light for plant color vision and development.

Biology Professor Adan Colon-Carmona is hosting this week's Seminar Series. He is bringing in guest speaker Dr. Beronda Montgomery from Michigan State University. Her talk is entlted, "Seeing the Light: Plant Color Vision and Developmental Acclimation." The discussion abstract is as follows:

"Photosynthetic organisms depend upon light for carbon fixation and production of reductant. Thus, the ability of these organisms to adapt to changes in the photoenvironment is critical. Plants and other photosynthetic organisms have diverse mechanisms for light perception and exhibit a number of metabolic and developmental photoresponses. Photoperception and the developmental changes that occur in response to light are arguably among the most important adaptations of photosynthetic organisms. Notably, light exposure results in distinct responses in specific seedling tissues during photomorphogenesis. Light promotes growth of cotyledons and leaves, as well as development and elongation of roots, whereas light inhibits elongation of hypocotyls. Prior physiological studies resulted in the identification of spatially distinct photoreceptor pools that control such discrete aspects of light-dependent growth and development in plants. Phytochromes are one of the most well-known plant photoreceptors coordinating the aforementioned tissue- and organ-specific plant responses. Despite significant advances in our understanding of the mechanisms of phytochrome synthesis and signaling, molecular evidence about spatial-specific phytochrome signaling is limited. To gain molecular insight into organ- and tissue-specific photoresponses, we initiated transgenic plant studies in Arabidopsis thaliana to regulate the spatial accumulation of photoactive phytochromes. We are investigating the phenotypic consequences of cell- and tissue-specific phytochrome deficiencies and have identified novel aspects of phytochrome signaling. Through the identification of specific mechanisms and candidate genes involved in the regulation of discrete aspects of light-mediated growth and development, our findings are adding significantly to our knowledge of the complex signaling cascades and cellular biology controlled by phytochromes in vivo."

To view this event flyer, click here. To view the whole schedule for the Spring 2017 Biology Seminar Series, click here

Please note the time difference.

For disability-related accommodations, including dietary accommodations, please visit two weeks prior to the event.