The onset of reproductive development is tightly regulated in response to environmental cues as early and delayed flowering greatly affects seed production. In Arabidopsis, the timing of flower formation is controlled by members of the Phosphatidyl Ethanolamine-Binding Protein (PEBP) family: TERMINAL FLOWER 1 (TFL1) promotes inflorescence fate whereas FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) promotes floral fate. […]
Author Archive for: mosnato
About Michela Osnato
I completed my studies at the University of Milan (ITALY), first with a M.S. in Plant Biotechnology and then with a PhD in Plant Biology and crop productivity.
The plasticity of plant development has always fascinated me. For this reason, I decided to investigate Gene Regulatory Networks underlying the development of vegetative and reproductive organs in model species and cereal crops. Recently, I have focused my research on the crosstalk between phytohormones and regulatory genes in plant adaptation to climate change (e.g. elevated ambient temperature, water limitation, soil salinity). The long-term goal is to use novel findings to obtain plant varieties characterized by improved climate resilience.
Despite thinking of myself as a motivated biotechnologist, my interest for public engagement progressively swayed me towards the participation in different outreach activities. Among others, I developed my own science communication project and disseminated science using Social networks (@secretlifeofaplantbiologist).
I am currently a member of the Plantae fellow program and regularly contribute to Science News stories with summaries and graphical abstracts.
Entries by Michela Osnato
Cis-regulatory elements (CREs) are DNA sequences found near or within genic regions that drive proper gene expression in time and space. Thus, CREs play essential roles in the diversification of spatially distinct cell-types with specialized function in multicellular organisms. To identify CREs underlying the specification of different organs in the crop species Zea mays (maize), […]
Gene gain through duplication and gene loss through loss-of-function (LoF) mutations determine genetic variation underlying diversification and adaptive evolution. In this review, Xu and Guo highlight the importance of LoF mutations in the evolutionary success of several organisms as revealed by advancements in whole-genome sequencing. The authors focused on the genome-wide distribution of LoF variants […]
In Arabidopsis pistils, ovule primordia differentiate from the placenta – meristematic tissue within the two fused carpels – in parallel rows with a regular spacing of 2-4 cells. Since fruit growth and ovule formation determine the maximum number of seeds enclosed in a silique, these two processes should be tightly coordinated to ensure reproductive success. […]
Plants communicate with the environment through stomata (i.e., pores found on leaf surfaces) and regulate gas exchange depending on internal and external cues by optimizing stomata density. Still, how plants integrate metabolic and environmental signals remain to be determined. Here, Han and colleagues discovered that stomatal index in Arabidopsis leaves decreased under conditions associated with […]
Guest Edited by Michela Osnato. I completed my studies at the University of Milan (ITALY), with a M.S. in Plant Biotechnology and a PhD in Plant Biology and crop productivity. The plasticity of plant development has always fascinated me. For this reason, I decided to investigate regulatory genes controlling the development of vegetative and reproductive organs […]
In plants, the perception of environmental threats induces a peak of calcium ions (Ca2+) in the cytosol that triggers signal transduction pathways leading to stomatal closure as defense response. In Arabidopsis, the mechanosensitive Ca2+ channel OSCA1 regulates water transpiration in response to abiotic stress, yet, a similar Ca2+channel involved in plant response to pathogens has […]
Biofortification aims at increasing the content of health-promoting nutrients in edible parts of the plant. As an example, enhancing the production of carotenoids – natural pigments that provide the yellow to red color – in crops could prevent vitamin A deficiency in humans. In nature, carotenoids accumulate in specialized organelles called chromoplasts, which differentiate from […]
Stem growth determines the final height of graminaceous plants and greatly influences productivity in cultivated species (e.g., short internodes in semi-dwarf rice varieties to increase lodging resistance) and adaptation in wild species (e.g., elongated internodes in tall deepwater rice to help survive flooding). In this article, Nagai and coworkers identified key regulatory factors involved in […]