A new study delves into how algae manage cell division processes when they suffer from starvation. The finding has implications for biofuel technologies, given that algae have the potential to become a sustainable source of high value oils.October 8, 2020
Cheryl Kerfeld was recently interviewed by the journal BioTechniques. In the video, she discusses bacterial microcompartments and her work on the Proteo Cell Project, an effort to create the first cell without any lipids present.September 3, 2020
The lab of Thomas D. Sharkey have characterized a sucrose transporter protein found in common beans. The recently discovered protein, called PvSUT1.1, could help us understand how beans tolerate hot temperatures.August 31, 2020
The four-year, $898,946 grant from the National Science Foundation will allow Sharkey to continue his research on the evolutionary pattern of the appearance and loss of isoprene emission among various land plants and the impact of these emissions have on the atmosphere.August 4, 2020
This long-from article details how our scientists are working to unlock the secrets of photosynthesis, an effort which might spur an agricultural revolution and lead to innovative energy and industrial technologies. The article appears in Futures, a magazine produced twice per year by Michigan State University AgBioResearch.July 16, 2020
MSU plant biologist Berkley Walker is part of a team of scientists that is using a 3-year, $1.4 million National Science Foundation Molecular and Cellular Biosciences award to explore the intersection between photorespiration and one-carbon metabolism, two plant biochemical processes that are critical to plant growth and human nutrition.July 15, 2020
The work explores how electrons can move across long distances within biomaterials, such as proteins. Understanding the factors that control electron transfer in a biological context is critical to advances in diverse fields, including bioenergy, biosynthesis and disease.July 6, 2020
A new paper reveals how nature has come up with solutions for photosynthetic organisms to safely harvest sunlight. The paper is included as a chapter in a new book, Photosynthesis in Algae: Biochemical and Physiological Mechanisms, published by Springer.June 24, 2020
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded the Michigan State University-DOE Plant Research Laboratory a three-year (2020-2023), $11.25 million DOE Office of Basic Energy Sciences competitive renewal grant to continue its innovative photosynthesis research.May 29, 2020
Scientists have established a new method to quantify how much cyanobacteria assimilate carbon in the process of photosynthesis. The method assesses carbon assimilation over a stretch of time. It also better factors in a wider range of environmental variables, such as changing carbon dioxide (CO2) levels or varying light intensities.May 26, 2020
Benning is featured on the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science's 'First-Person Science' series, where scientists describe how they made significant discoveries over years of research.May 12, 2020
The grant to Brad Day and Sheng Yang He will fund research examining plant responses to environmental threats and an outreach program designed to educate the general public on plant research.April 24, 2020
In a new study, published in the journal Nature, the lab of Sheng Yang He shows how plant genes select which microbes get to live inside their leaves in order stay healthy. This is the first study to show a causal relationship between plant health and assembly of the microbial community in the phyllosphere.April 9, 2020
In plants, elevated defense tends to inhibit plant growth. New research suggests plants have a metabolism-sensing mechanism that may mediate between growth and defense functions.April 7, 2020
New research is refining our understanding of how light wavelengths impact how plants develop their chloroplasts.March 5, 2020
The protein, peroxiredoxin Q, is known to maintain a healthy balance of chemicals and energy levels in chloroplasts. The new research shows the protein also impacts the system that produces chloroplast membranes.February 18, 2020
The CAMTA system - which is known to protect plants from cold weather - plays a newly discovered role: when bacteria invade a leaf, CAMTA warns neighboring, unaffected leaves to prepare for invasion.February 11, 2020
When algae get stressed, they hibernate and store energy in forms that we can use to make biofuels. Understanding how stress impacts algal hibernation could help scientists lower the cost of biofuels production.February 3, 2020
Recent models are telling us that, as our climate warms up, pests will cause more damage to crops. But these models do not factor how infested plants react to rising temperatures. If we do, plants may suffer a worse fate.January 20, 2020
When electrons move, they are the electricity that powers life. But they are hard to pin down. The newly engineered system could guide electron transfer over long distances, powering future applications in medicine or 'green' fuel production.January 15, 2020
By explaining a photosynthetic peculiarity in switchgrass, MSU researchers from the Walker lab may have unlocked even more of the plant’s potential.
Researchers from the Vermaas lab created a more efficient tool to solve the problem of ring piercings in molecular simulations. This work is published in Biomolecules.
Complicated sets of biological data can be challenging to extrapolate meaningful information from. Wanting to find a better way to look at this data led Berkley Walker, assistant professor at the MSU-DOE Plant Research Laboratory, to team up with statistician and Assistant Professor Chih-Li Sung from the Department of Statistics and Probability.