On December 12th the Wageningen Centre for Systems Biology (WCSB) will organise a seminar on systems biology. The seminar is free, will take an hour and will be followed by drinks. No registration is necessary, so feel free to come by!
Dr. Henrik Jönsson, Group Leader Sainsbury Laboratory, University of Cambridge and Professor Computational Biology and Biological Physics, Department of Astronomy and Theoretical Physics, Lund University
"Understanding plant shoot development - a Computational Morphodynamics approach"
In the shoot apical meristem a population of stem cells are maintained throughout the life of the plant, cells at the periphery starts to differentiate into more specialized cell types, and new organs are initiated in spectactularly symmetric patterns. It is known that the dynamics and maintenance of the meristem is determined by gene regulatory networks, hormone signaling and mechanical forces. Our aim is to understand how these modules are integrated, acting on a cellular level, and producing a very organized tissular regulation of a coordinated differentiation and morphogenesis. To address this we employ the method of Computational Morphodynamics, where live-imaging of the complete shoot is combined with mathematical modeling for iteratively improving the understanding of growth and differentiation. In this talk I will discuss several aspects of the dynamics. I will show that the radial patterning within the meristem can result from a gene regulatory network as well as from a purly mechanical model. I will continue to discuss how auxin and cytokinins can be involved in setting up the radial patterning and how this relates to early organ initiation.
For more information check http://www.slcu.cam.ac.uk/directory/jonsson-henrik and http://home.thep.lu.se/~henrik/.
More information about WCSB and the 14 different projects can be found on the website www.wur.nl/systemsbiology.