Recognizing Plant Cell authors: Margot Smit

Margot Smit, co-first author of A PXY-Mediated Transcriptional Network Integrates Signaling Mechanisms to Control Vascular Development in Arabidopsis

Current Position: HHMI postdoc in the group of Prof. Dr. Dominique Bergmann, Stanford University Department of Biology

Education: MSc in Biotechnology and PhD at the Laboratory of Biochemistry at Wageningen University, The Netherlands

Non-scientific Interests: Bouldering, board games, baking, scicomm on Instagram (@mar_gogogo_tolab)

Brief bio: As part of my MSc at Wageningen University, I travelled to UC Davis for a thesis project. I worked with Dr. Peter Etchells in the group of Dr. Siobhan Brady, preparing and performing enhanced Yeast One Hybrid assays to identify transcription factors which interact with promoters of a large number of vascular genes. I really enjoyed our attempts at untangling the giant network that controls vascular development. After network analysis and some follow-up experiments I returned to Wageningen University for my PhD project. In the group of Prof. Dr. Dolf Weijers, I investigated the initiation of vascular tissue identity during Arabidopsis embryogenesis. I continued to focus on the regulation of vascular gene expression, this time looking at the earliest step in vascular development. Recently, I started as an HHMI postdoc at Stanford University and I’m looking forward to further developing our understanding of gene regulation, this time in stomatal development.