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Explore the Science and Art of Plants at Third Annual Fascination of Plants Day @ MSU: Arts Go Green Explore the Science and Art of Plants at Third Annual Fascination of Plants Day @ MSU: Arts Go Green

MSU hosts the third annual Fascination of Plants Day @ MSU. This year, plant sciences meet the arts in a collaboration between MSU plant scientists, the Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University, and the East Lansing Art Festival.

April 9, 2019 Tags: outreach
Our first look at a new light absorbing protein in cyanobacteria Our first look at a new light absorbing protein in cyanobacteria

The HCP2 protein is an ancestor of proteins that are known to protect against damage caused by excess light exposure. The study is the first of its kind to structurally and biophysically analyze a protein from the recently discovered HCP family.

April 2, 2019 Tags: fundamental research, Kerfeld lab
[LINK] Ducat featured as essential reading for stemming the tide of trash [LINK] Ducat featured as essential reading for stemming the tide of trash

The Ducat lab's research on bioplastics is featured in a recent article in the online publication, The Conversation.

April 1, 2019 Tags: outreach, Ducat lab
MSU students win at 2019 ASPB Midwest Meeting MSU students win at 2019 ASPB Midwest Meeting

The American Society of Plant Biologists meeting was a chance to practice presentation skills and meet plant biologists from across the Midwest.

March 27, 2019 Tags: future scientists, Benning lab
Keeping plants nourished: the workings of a photosynthesis backup system Keeping plants nourished: the workings of a photosynthesis backup system

Plants use the shunt to quickly reboot the Calvin-Benson cycle, the crucial process that makes their food and nourishes the planet's food chain.

March 25, 2019 Tags: Sharkey lab, fundamental research
Faculty voice: Christian Danve Castroverde: Striving for harmony Faculty voice: Christian Danve Castroverde: Striving for harmony

Recently awarded a fellowship by NSERC, Danve muses on the value of relationships to personal and scientific endeavors.

March 20, 2019 Tags: future scientists, He lab
[LINK] Brandizzi lab to study the effect of space flight on seeds [LINK] Brandizzi lab to study the effect of space flight on seeds

The goal is to help increase the nutritional value of plants grown in spaceflight. The seeds will be on NASA's Orion spacecraft, on its maiden voyage to the moon and back.

March 18, 2019 Tags: fundamental research, Brandizzi lab
Student view: Brandon Rohnke: Advocating for science Student view: Brandon Rohnke: Advocating for science

Brandon Rohnke, a graduate student in the Montgomery lab, reflects on his recent trip to the U.S. Capitol to meet with the staff of seven legislators.

March 6, 2019 Tags: Montgomery lab, future scientists
Two PRL grad students advocate for science on Capitol Hill Two PRL grad students advocate for science on Capitol Hill

Our students were part of a MSU team that met with staff at the offices of Senator Peters, Senator Stabenow, Representative Slotkin and four other representatives to advocate for science funding.

February 21, 2019 Tags: Kerfeld lab, Montgomery lab, future scientists
Harnessing synthetic biology to co-produce high-value terpenoid biomaterials and biofuel in plants Harnessing synthetic biology to co-produce high-value terpenoid biomaterials and biofuel in plants

The new synthetic biology tools allow to produce both terpenoids and oil, a biofuel resource, in plant leaves.

February 20, 2019 Tags: Benning lab, green solutions
Faculty Voice: Berkley Walker: Beneath the ski mask Faculty Voice: Berkley Walker: Beneath the ski mask

Recently, our own Berkley Walker was recorded skiing across campus on the eve of a polar vortex. That recording went viral. Read why he thinks plants are even hardier than he was that day.

February 14, 2019 Tags: Walker lab, outreach
New insights into plant cell organelle and molecule movement New insights into plant cell organelle and molecule movement

New research reveals a protein, TGNap1, that supports the poorly-understood Trans-Golgi Network in structure, function, and motion. The study also provides evidence for microtubule-driven organelle movement, a new line of thought in plant science.

January 29, 2019 Tags: fundamental research, Brandizzi lab
Kenny Wang wins 2018 Kende Award Kenny Wang wins 2018 Kende Award

The Kende award recognizes the best doctoral dissertation in the plant sciences at Michigan State University over the last two years.

January 17, 2019 Tags: Benning lab, awards
[LINK] How do you grow plants in space? Michigan State researchers are on the case [LINK] How do you grow plants in space? Michigan State researchers are on the case

A Lansing State Journal story features Dr. Brandizzi, Evan Angelos, a fourth-year doctoral student, Starla Zemelis-Durfee, Brandizzi lab manager, and their research on how plants grow in and respond to stressful environments. 

January 3, 2019 Tags: fundamental research, Brandizzi lab
[LINK] New report says Howe and He among most highly cited researchers [LINK] New report says Howe and He among most highly cited researchers

For the fifth year in a row, the faculty members have been recognized in the Highly Cited Researchers List, an annual compilation of the global leaders in scientific influence by Clarivate Analytics.

December 17, 2018 Tags: awards, Howe lab, He lab
[VIDEO] How bacteria organize their factories, and what it means for a bioeconomy [VIDEO] How bacteria organize their factories, and what it means for a bioeconomy

MSU scientists report how cyanobacteria line up their CO2-fixing factories within them in a system that works like Velcro. The research is part of an effort to control and repurpose these factories to make products for human consumption.

December 6, 2018 Tags: Ducat lab, fundamental research
[LINK] Federica Brandizzi named AAAS fellow [LINK] Federica Brandizzi named AAAS fellow

The American Association for the Advancement of Science has recognized Dr. Brandizzi for her work on the endoplasmic reticulum and the Golgi apparatus, organelles pivotal to food production in plant cells.

November 27, 2018 Tags: Brandizzi lab, awards
[LINK] Cheryl Kerfeld: Inspired by nature [LINK] Cheryl Kerfeld: Inspired by nature

Cheryl Kerfeld is the Hannah Distinguished Professor of Structural Bioengineering in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and at the MSU-DOE Plant Research Laboratory.

November 20, 2018 Tags: Kerfeld lab
New ways to control bacterial factories for future biotech uses New ways to control bacterial factories for future biotech uses

The new methods let scientists assemble the factories on demand and insert custom molecules inside them for further processing. The aim is to eventually design sustainable medical, industrial, or energy applications.

November 7, 2018 Tags: Kerfeld lab, green solutions
Christian Danve Castroverde wins NSERC Postdoctoral Fellowship Christian Danve Castroverde wins NSERC Postdoctoral Fellowship

Castroverde, a post-doc in the He lab who researches how climate conditions influence plant defense responses, has won a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Postdoctoral Fellowship.

November 5, 2018 Tags: He lab, awards

Top Stories

Using Artificial Intelligence to delve into plant cell secrets Using Artificial Intelligence to delve into plant cell secrets

A new AI system, called DeepLearnMOR, can identify organelles and classify hundreds of microscopy images in a matter of seconds and with an accuracy rate of over 97%. The study illustrates the potential of AI to significantly increase the scope, speed, and accuracy of screening tools in plant biology.

Study links energy metabolism to reduced fertility in overheated bean crops Study links energy metabolism to reduced fertility in overheated bean crops

The study reports that the activity levels of the carbon metabolism protein, G6PDH, are related to decreased production of pollen in bean flowers. As global temperatures rise, some bean crops, including Michigan-grown varieties, might be more sensitive to higher heat levels.

2021 Anton Lang Memorial Award winners announced 2021 Anton Lang Memorial Award winners announced

Evan Angelos and Hainan Zhao were recognized during a ceremony which took place online on Monday, April 19, 2021. The Anton Lang Memorial Fund was established in honor of the founding director of the MSU-DOE Plant Research Laboratory, who passed away in 1996.