Recognizing featured Plant Cell first authors: Zhangjian Hu

Zhangjian Hu, featured first author of A Plant Phytosulfokine Peptide Initiates Auxin-Dependent Immunity through Cytosolic Ca2+ Signaling in Tomato

Current Position: Graduate student in the Department of Horticulture, Zhejiang University, China

Education: B.S. (2012) in Applied Biological Science (Horticulture), Zhejiang University, China

Non-scientific Interests: Running, watching movies and cooking.

Brief bio sketch: I chose horticulture as my major when I entered Zhejiang University (ZJU), because flowers, fruits and vegetables always give people beautiful, fit and sweet satisfaction. After achieving my B.S. degree under the supervision of Dr. Jiangquan Yu, I continued training as a Ph.D. student in his group, focusing on mechanisms underlying the signaling responses of tomato plants to abiotic/biotic stresses. With a scholarship from the China Scholarship Council, I joined Dr. Libo Shan’s laboratory at Texas A&M University (TAMU) as a visiting Ph.D. student from 2014 to 2016 to investigate plant defense signaling. After receiving solid scientific training in the molecular biology and biochemistry of molecular plant-microbe interactions at TAMU, I went back to ZJU and continued to explore the molecular signaling underlying PSK-mediated immunity. I would like to thank Miss Huan Zhang and Dr. Kai Shi, who worked with me repeatedly to test different hypotheses and improve the experimental process. Eventually, we showed that PSK initiated Ca2+ influx and auxin-dependent immunity against Botrytis cinerea via the PSKR1 receptor in tomato. In the future, identification of direct targets and regulatory factors for PSKR1 should give us better insights into mechanisms of PSK-mediated plant immune signaling.