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Jie Pacelli

Research Operation Manager

1152C Plant Sciences Building


Jie Pacelli holds a Ph.D. from Kyushu University (Japan). Dr. Pacelli has extensive experience in maintaining laboratory equipment performance by participating in the definition of operating procedures, establishing quality standards and troubleshooting issues. She actively supports all aspects of lab research at the N.C. Plant Sciences Initiative (N.C. PSI). Dr. Pacelli’s research specializes include the development of analytical methodology for the detection of organic and inorganic components.


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Date: 07/01/12 - 6/30/13
Amount: $20,000.00
Funding Agencies: Forest Biotechnology Industrial Research Consortium (FORBIRC)

Laccases were proposed for lignin biosynthesis and for phenolic production. However, currently there are no reports of laccase functions on the monolignol polymerization in trees. We have identified 20 xylem-expressed laccases among the 79 laccase gene models in the P. trichcarpa genome. To study which laccases are involved in wood formation, we produced transgenics overexpressing Ptr-miR397a, which is predicted to target laccases. Our preliminary qRT-PCR showed gene expression reductions of selected six laccase genes, indicating successful functioning of Ptr-miR397a in the transgenic plants. We propose to characterize the transgenic plants for transcriptome and sugar composition analysis, including lignin content, lignin S/G ratio, and phenolic content. Correlation of the transcriptome and sugar composition changes will enable us to identify the laccases responsible for wood formation.

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