News

Protecting photosynthesis from stalling: a 24-hr molecular hotline

The enzyme, G6PDH, diverts and pumps resources into the Calvin-Benson cycle at critical moments to keep the cycle active and, by extension, plants happy and healthy.  

Gutter Ball 25: Tony Schilmiller claims third championship

The PRL celebrated 25 years of bowling. Over 100 MSU staff, faculty, and students took over City Limits Bowling Center to vie for the ultimate prize: Gutter Ball 25 Champion!

Tags: outreach
A new rhomboid-like protein that helps plants produce lipids

Rhomboid-like proteins are found across a large number of organisms, like bacteria, flies, and humans. This is the first time such a protein – and how it influences lipid production and transport – has been studied in detail in plants.

2019 Anton Lang Memorial Award Winners Announced

Luciana Renna and Ben Mansfeld were both recognized as scientists who exemplify the research excellence, ideas, dedication, and vision of former PRL director, Anton Lang.

Barb Sears receives Faculty Emeriti Association award

Dr. Sears, an MSU Faculty Emerita retired from the Department of Plant Biology, was awarded the 2019 MSU Faculty Emeriti Association Award for "Outstanding Contributions by an Individual."

Simpler & smaller: a new synthetic nanofactory inspired by nature

The genetically engineered shell is based on natural structures and the principles of protein evolution. Scientists see such structures as a source of new industrial or medical technologies.

MSU scientists teach kids about plant defense at MSU Science Festival 2019

4th to 6th graders got to learn about plant defense mechanisms and the scientific method. Leah Johnson, lead organizer, reflects on the event in an interview.

Anastasiya Lavell wins BMB Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching Award

The award is given to a student for exceptional performance as a graduate teaching assistant during his or her graduate program.

Two PRL students win first prize at UURAF 2019

Madeline Bresson from the Sharkey lab and Jacob Wright from the Ducat lab have each won first prize at the University Undergraduate Research and Arts Forum. Both were recognized for their poster presentations.

Explore the Science and Art of Plants at Third Annual Fascination of Plants Day @ MSU: Arts Go Green

MSU hosts the third annual Fascination of Plants Day @ MSU. This year, plant sciences meet the arts in a collaboration between MSU plant scientists, the Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University, and the East Lansing Art Festival.

Tags: outreach
Our first look at a new light absorbing protein in cyanobacteria

The HCP2 protein is an ancestor of proteins that are known to protect against damage caused by excess light exposure. The study is the first of its kind to structurally and biophysically analyze a protein from the recently discovered HCP family.

[LINK] Ducat featured as essential reading for stemming the tide of trash

The Ducat lab's research on bioplastics is featured in a recent article in the online publication, The Conversation.

MSU students win at 2019 ASPB Midwest Meeting

The American Society of Plant Biologists meeting was a chance to practice presentation skills and meet plant biologists from across the Midwest.

Keeping plants nourished: the workings of a photosynthesis backup system

Plants use the shunt to quickly reboot the Calvin-Benson cycle, the crucial process that makes their food and nourishes the planet's food chain.

Faculty voice: Christian Danve Castroverde: Striving for harmony

Recently awarded a fellowship by NSERC, Danve muses on the value of relationships to personal and scientific endeavors.

[LINK] Brandizzi lab to study the effect of space flight on seeds

The goal is to help increase the nutritional value of plants grown in spaceflight. The seeds will be on NASA's Orion spacecraft, on its maiden voyage to the moon and back.

Student view: Brandon Rohnke: Advocating for science

Brandon Rohnke, a graduate student in the Montgomery lab, reflects on his recent trip to the U.S. Capitol to meet with the staff of seven legislators.

Two PRL grad students advocate for science on Capitol Hill

Our students were part of a MSU team that met with staff at the offices of Senator Peters, Senator Stabenow, Representative Slotkin and four other representatives to advocate for science funding.

Harnessing synthetic biology to co-produce high-value terpenoid biomaterials and biofuel in plants

The new synthetic biology tools allow to produce both terpenoids and oil, a biofuel resource, in plant leaves.

Faculty Voice: Berkley Walker: Beneath the ski mask

Recently, our own Berkley Walker was recorded skiing across campus on the eve of a polar vortex. That recording went viral. Read why he thinks plants are even hardier than he was that day.