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Abstract Detail

Plenary Symposium: New Directions in Molecular and Organismal Botany

Snow, Allison [1].

New Directions in Molecular and Organismal Botany.

IN recent decades, an explosion of new molecular techniques has dramatically altered the course of botanical research. This year's Plenary Symposium offers a rich, "user-friendly" overview of emerging research that combines botany and genetics, providing new approaches for understanding the genetic basis of evolutionary and ecological processes. Botanists working at all levels of organization - from molecules to ecosystems, and from plant breeding to paleobotany - benefit greatly from recent advances in molecular biology. Likewise, molecular biologists are becoming more engaged in interdisciplinary collaborations with physiologists, population biologists, and evolutionary biologists. Five symposium speakers will provide a fresh look at research topics that integrate genetics and organismal biology. Dina Mandolini will explore genomic resources for botanists who study the evolution and diversification of green algae and early land plants. Elizabeth Kellogg will discuss insights from transcription factors that control the morphogenesis and architecture of inflorescences, offering new approaches for comparative morphology. Michael Purugganan's research on the evolution of flowering times in Arabidopsis is at the forefront of the new fields of evolutionary and ecological genomics. John Burke investigates the nature and identification of "domestication genes" and other agronomically important traits in cultivated plants, including sunflower. Finally, Andre Kessler will describe integrative methods for understanding volatile plant defense chemicals and "cross-talk" among plants in response to herbivore damage. Each speaker will provide a non-technical summary of how their field of study has evolved, examples of research questions that are now becoming feasible, and what exciting opportunities await younger botanists in the future. A common theme is the value of interdisciplinary collaborations that capitalize on recent advances in molecular biology. Speakers also will suggest strategies for how graduate students and recent Ph.D.s can prepare for newly emerging research directions.

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1 - Ohio State University, Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, 300 Aronoff Laboratory, 318 W. 12th Ave., Columbus, Ohio, 43210-1293, USA

molecular evolution.

Presentation Type: Symposium or Colloquium Presentation
Session: 12-1
Location: 170/Holt
Date: Monday, July 31st, 2006
Time: 8:30 AM
Abstract ID:1071

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