Brace roots are a type of aerial root, which means they are developing in the absence of soil cues (e.g. water, nutrients, mechanical). To understand what environmental cues impact the initiation and emergence of brace roots, we are interested in the impact of light quality and intensity. A previous study has shown that higher density planting, which results in shading, leads to a reduction of the number of whorls from which brace roots emerge and the number of roots per whorl (Demotes-Mainard and Pellerin, 1992). Thus, we are pursuing questions about how the perception of shade impacts the development of brace roots. Beyond brace roots, we know very little about how roots are impacted by the perception of light. Thus, we are collaborating with Dr. Ullas Pedmale at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory to also understand these processes in Arabidopsis thaliana and tomato.
Current Lab Members Working on this Project: Noah & Josephina
Funding: The National Science Foundation Award #1755355 (PI: Pedmale; Co-PI: Sparks)