Laboratory of Molecular and Ecological Physiology

Institutional research project #0126-2016-0001: «Molecular and cellular mechanisms of stress-resistant development and productivity in Embryophyte taxa with contrasting evolutionary history» (2017–2022). Project leader: Olga V. Voitsekhovskaja

The diversity of land plants (Embryophyta), including both ancient and recently emerged taxa, displays a large spectrum of adaptations to highly contrasting ecological and climatic conditions, representing the conditions that prevailed when and where these taxa evolved. These adaptations confer tolerance of a number of stresses while enabling plants to achieve high productivity under these conditions. Studies on representative species from a range of the embryophyte taxa should pave the way to reveal and characterize the regulatory genes, enzymes and other molecular and cellular components underlying these adaptations, leading to an in depth understanding of the mechanisms conferring stress resistance and high productivity.

The importance of this research lies in the fact that currently, studies of representatives of land plant taxa other than angiosperms by methods of molecular and cell biology are lagging behind studies of angiosperm model plants. However, the development of next generation sequencing as well as progress in genomic sequencing, meanwhile allow widening the spectrum of model plants to be studied using tools of molecular and cell biology. Within the project, we use transcriptomics, bioinformatic methods, gene cloning and cell-specific localization of gene expression by in situ RNA-RNA hybridization, as well as other methods of molecular and cell biology. The results will help to understand the evolution of morphogenesis, the adaptation of photosynthesis to different ecological conditions, and regulatory pathways of signal perception and transduction in land plants.