Neha Rai, first author of “Perception of solar UV radiation by plants: photoreceptors and mechanisms”
Current Position: Post Doc in Prof. Roman Ulm’s lab at the Department of Botany and Plant Biology, University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland
Education: Ph.D. in Plant Biology, University of Helsinki (Finland); M.Sc. in Plant Biology and Biotechnology, University of Hyderabad (India); B.Sc. in Botany Honors, Banaras Hindu University (India)
Non-scientific Interests: Traveling and travel-blogging, Reading, Photography, Music
Brief bio: My interest in plants began in my childhood and I always got fascinated by how some plants grow and flower better than others under different environmental conditions. It inspired me to do my Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Botany/Plant Biology. After completing my master’s degree, I began an internship at the Biological Research Center, Szeged (Hungary). Both during my Master’s thesis and internship period, I investigated the effect of salt stress on the photosynthetic apparatus of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. During my internship, I became curious to learn about photobiology, particularly about the perception of UV radiation by plants and that’s when I came across Dr. Pedro Aphalo’s research group at the University of Helsinki (Finland). During my PhD, I investigated perception of solar UV radiation and blue light by plants from an eco-physiological perspective. I recently finished my Ph.D. in November 2020. Now I am more interested to mechanistically understand the transcriptional regulation by UV radiation through the UVR8 photoreceptor in plants and therefore I started a Post Doc in December 2020 in Prof. Roman Ulm’s research group at the University of Geneva (Switzerland). As every new place and work environment brings new learning experiences, I am looking forward to learning a lot from my time in Geneva.