Recognizing Plant Physiology first authors: Hui Liu

Hui Liu, first author of WRINKLED1 regulates BIOTIN ATTACHMENT DOMAIN-CONTAINING proteins that inhibit fatty acid synthesis

Current position: Research Associate, Biology Department, Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL)

Education: MS in Cell Biology, Sun Yat-sen University

Non-scientific Interests: traveling, reading, painting and drawing

Brief bio: From a young age, I have been interested in biology and amazed by the ingenious arrangement of how the complex organisms work. After obtaining my MS degree, I joined the group of Biomedical Physics, at the Chinese Academy of Sciences as a RA, where I worked on cancer therapy by heavy ion irradiation. After moving to US with my husband, who was a graduate student at Cornell University, I volunteered in Dr. Olena Vatamaniuk’s Lab of Department of Crop and Soil Science, Cornell University where I contributed to research focused on oligopeptide metabolism in Arabidopsis. In 2012 I joined Dr. John Shanklin’s group in the Biology Department at Brookhaven National Lab. I work on plant lipid metabolism, focusing on increasing oil content in plant vegetative tissues by metabolic engineering. In a previous study I worked with my talented lab colleagues and discovered BADC proteins are conditional repressors of ACCase, a key enzyme in FA synthesis.

In the current work, I found that double mutant badc1 badc2 phenocopied the wri1 mutant (WRI1 being the master transcription regulator of FA synthesis) with respect to both reduction in root length and elevation of indole-3-acetic acid-Asp levels relative to WT, and which eventually led us to the discovery that WRI1 regulates the genes for both the induction of FA synthesis and the conditional inhibitors of FA synthesis, BADCs.