Mapping protein complexes in vivo

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Project Description

During multicellular development, the specification of distinct cell fates is often regulated by the same transcription factors operating differently in distinct cis-regulatory modules. In the model plant Arabidopsis root, distinct cell types are determined by the interacting transcription factors within one contiguous tissue layer. Using fluorescence lifetime microscopy we revealacell type-specific protein complexes that differentially regulate target genes and instruct distinct cell fates. In addition to determining the network function in other organs, we are currently studying how are these complexes established and maintained by generating a temporal interaction map and dissecting the transcriptional regulation by these complexes.We will use the following tools: FRET-FLIM, confocal microscopy imaging, mutants analysis.​
Program - Plant Science
Division - Biological and Environmental Sciences and Engineering
Center Affiliation - Center for Desert Agriculture
Field of Study - ​Developmental biology, cell biology

About the
Researcher

Ikram Blilou

Associate Professor, Plant Science

Ikram Blilou

Professor Blilou' s research focuses on how plant cells communicate to transfer positional information and to instruct specific functions during pattern formation. This involves studying regulatory networks that control protein movement and asymmetric cell division in plant roots, by mapping protein complexes in vivo at the cellular resolution, and by unraveling how their distinct spatial distribution leads to specific gene expression and proper cell fate acquisition.

Professor Blilou's research group also aims to understand molecular mechanisms of growth/defense trade-offs in plants by unraveling how the same set of developmental genes can regulate defense response under stress conditions. The team also intends to understand adaptive strategies used by desert plants (using date palms as a model) to survive in hostile conditions.

Desired Project Deliverables

​Generate a spatio-temporal protein interaction map in vivo​