Shuyan Song: The Plant Cell First Author

Shuyan Song, first author of “The functional evolution of architecturally different plant geranyl diphosphate synthases from geranylgeranyl diphosphate synthase” 

Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow in State Key Laboratory of Rice Biology, College of Agriculture and Biotechnology & ZJU‐Hangzhou Global Scientific and Technological Innovation Center, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou

Education:2017-2022 Ph.D in Nanjing university; 2013-2015 MS in Huazhong Agricultural University; 2009-2013 BS in Huazhong Agricultural University

Non-scientific Interests: Musical, reading; cycling

Brief bio: I joined Prof. Shan Lu’s lab at Nanjing University for a PhD project about the functional evolution of the plant GGPPS family. Previous research of LuLab discovered the multifaceted functions of GGPPS family members in supplying and branching GGPP metabolite flux for terpenoids synthesis, and different strategies were adopted by rice and pepper GGPPS homologs to produce GPP. We wondered the functional evolution of the plant GGPPS family members and how they evolved to produce GPP. By combining phylogenetic analysis with functional characterization of GGPPS homologs from a wide range of photosynthetic organisms, we investigated how different GPPS architectures have evolved within the GGPPS protein family. Our results reveal that GGPPS gene family expansion and functional divergence began early in nonvascular plants, and that independent parallel evolutionary processes gave rise to homomeric and heteromeric GPPSs. Our study elucidated an evolutionary path for the formation of GPPSs with different architectures from GGPPSs and uncovered the molecular mechanisms involved in this differentiation. After graduation, I joined Prof. Ronghui Pan’s lab to investigate the lineage-specific metabolites produced via peroxisomes in rice, and develop strategies for the plant peroxisome engineering modification.