Recognizing Plant Physiology authors: Premachandran Yadukrishnan

Premachandran Yadukrishnan, first author of HY5 suppresses, rather than promotes, ABA-mediated inhibition of post-germination seedling development

Current Position: Research Associate (ad hoc), Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Bhopal, India

Education: Ph.D. (Biological Sciences) from IISER Bhopal, India; M.Sc. Agri. (Molecular Biology & Biotechnology) from G.B. Pant University of Agriculture & Technology, Pantnagar, India; B.Sc. Agriculture from Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, India

Non-scientific interests: reading, music, football

Brief bio: I completed my bachelors in Agriculture from Tamil Nadu Agricultural University in 2012. After finishing M.Sc. Agri with a major in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology from G.B. Pant University Pantnagar, I joined Dr. Sourav Datta’s lab at IISER Bhopal for my doctoral research in 2014. I was mainly interested in exploring the interactions between light and abscisic acid signaling pathways during early plant development, and identified that COP1, a central negative regulator of light signaling, enhances ABA responsiveness of seedlings during their post-germination growth in darkness. We found that COP1 promotes ABA signaling by acting downstream of the key ABA signaling gene ABI5 and facilitate the binding of ABI5 on its target promoters through unknown mechanisms (this work was published in The Plant Journal earlier this year). After completing my Ph.D., I decided to continue in Dr. Datta’s lab for a short period to further investigate the molecular basis of the ABA hyposensitive post-germination phenotype of cop1 mutants. I examined its dependence on HY5, an important light signaling factor and a degradation substrate of COP1, in this process. Although previous reports indicated that HY5 acts as a positive regulator of ABA signaling, we found that HY5 suppresses, rather than promotes, ABA-mediated arrest of post-germination growth. Through this finding published as a letter in Plant Physiology, we propose a revised role of HY5 in integrating ABA and light signaling during early seedling development. In future, I look forward to exploring more about environmental control of phytohormone networks during early plant development.