Area(s) of Expertise
Anemia induced by iron deficiency is one of the most prevalent nutritional disorders in the world. Most people obtain nutritional iron predominantly from plants. Our research focuses on understanding the molecular mechanisms that plants use to uptake, transport, and utilize iron, and respond to low iron conditions.
We use genomics, molecular biology, and genetics to identify root-specific transcriptional responses that regulate physiological alterations associated with iron deprivation in the model plant, Arabidopsis thaliana. Our work resulted in the first whole-genome, high-resolution transcriptional profile of iron deficiency in the root, and led to the identification of two regulatory genes that play a key role in how plants respond to low iron conditions.
Our continued efforts are focused on identifying additional iron deficiency response regulators and their corresponding gene targets, with the long-term goal of elucidating gene regulatory networks involved in plant iron homeostasis. Ultimately this information may lead to the generation of crops with increased nutritional content and increased yield when grown in poor soils.
- Plant Physiology (PB 421)
- The E3 ligase BRUTUS facilitates degradation of VOZ1/2 transcription factors, PLANT CELL AND ENVIRONMENT (2018)
- More than meets the eye: emergent properties of transcription factors networks in arabidopsis, Biochimica et Biophysica Acta. Gene Regulatory Mechanisms (2017)
- Further insight into BRUTUS domain composition and functionality, Plant Signaling & Behavior (2016)
- Clustering and differential alignment algorithm: Identification of early stage regulators in the Arabidopsis thaliana iron deficiency response, PLoS One (2015)
- Iron-binding E3 ligase mediates iron response in plants by targeting basic helix-loop-helix transcription factors, Plant Physiology (2015)
- Chromate alters root system architecture and activates expression of genes involved in iron homeostasis and signaling in Arabidopsis thaliana, Plant Molecular Biology (2014)
- Fixating on metals: New insights into the role of metals in nodulation and symbiotic nitrogen fixation, Frontiers in Plant Science (2014)
- Ironing out the issues: Integrated approaches to understanding iron homeostasis in plants, Plant Science (2013)
Ph.D., Molecular Genetics, University of Georgia (2005)
B.S., Biology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (1998)