News

Better together: a bacteria community creates biodegradable plastic with sunlight

The cooperative works like an assembly line and is relatively cheap to run. Future products could include medicine, even food for Martian outposts.

Grad student Isaac Osei-Bonsu wins conference award

The Department of Plant Biology student won for his poster presentation on research to improve photosynthetic performance in heat-sensitive cowpea crops.

Taking the brakes off plant production: not so good after all

When engineers want to speed up a system, they look for the slowest steps and make them faster. In plants, this approach potentially does more harm than good, says the Kramer lab.

PhotosynQ education focus: Sonya Lawrence [LINK]

This post highlights how the Instructor in the Biological Sciences Program at MSU has been incorporating PhotosynQ into her courses since 2014.

Beronda Montgomery named American Society for Microbiology Distinguished Lecturer [LINK]

The five lectures, taking place between 2017 and 2019, will focus on diverse research topics and also career cultivation.

Identifying a new family of light-responsive proteins

The new family of proteins protects cyanobacteria from sunlight damage, and they are interesting for use in synthetic medical or renewable energy applications.

Turning the evolutionary clock back on a light-sensitive protein

Scientists show how the two OCP parts interact and also create new synthetic versions of that protein. The goal is to use it in synthetic healthcare systems, powered by light.

Perspectives on building nanofactories for energy and medical uses

Scientists are learning how bacterial nanofactories are constructed in nature. Recent experiments show we could engineer their building blocks into new structures, for useful applications.

PhotosynQ at Feed the Future Conference in Burkina Faso [LINK]

“Feed the Future," funded by USAID, engages universities, institutions, and private organizations in the US, Africa, and Central/South America to improve legume management on local farms. 

Han Bao wins Gordon Research Conference award

Her poster showcased a newly discovered family of light-sensitive proteins of interest for renewable energy and medical applications.

Xiufang Xin starts PI position at the Chinese Academy of Sciences [LINK]

The former He lab post-doc joins the Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology. She studies plant-microbe interactions and how plants control a healthy microbiome.

Introducing PhotosynQ to Scientists in West Africa [LINK]

A blog post by Dan TerAvest on a workshop with researchers from across West Africa in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, with support from the McKnight Foundation.

Taylor Weiss to join Arizona State University in August

Taylor will be Assistant Professor in the Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering, researching the design of artificial and synthetic algae-bacteria consortia for scaled production of bioproducts.

Anso Bohrer: reflecting on Fascination of Plants day [LINK]

The postdoctoral research associate at Michigan State University reflects on coordinating MSU's first Fascination of Plants Day.

Protecting plants from the power of sunlight

Plants, like us, don’t like too much sunlight. The Kramer lab has figured a way to better measure how plants respond to excessive exposure, and the information might help us create more resilient plants.

A new chloroplast 'app' for making biofuels

In addition to doing photosynthesis, the chloroplast is the source of up to 10% of seed oil production in plants. Scientists are experimenting with harvesting that oil to make biofuels.

Gregg Howe earns University Distinguished Professor title

Howe is among ten MSU faculty named University Distinguished Professors in recognition of their achievements in the classroom, laboratory, and community.

The ref and the fighter: two sides of plant defense

The Howe lab delves into how defense genes do more than just fight. They also tangle with growth functions.

Thomas Sharkey joins the PRL

The MSU Distinguished Professor studies the biochemistry and biophysics that determine the exchange of gases between the biosphere and the atmosphere.

[VIDEO] Our first ever look at bacterial organelle shells

In a new Science publication, The Kerfeld lab show us the details of bacterial organelle shells for the first time ever, making it easier to target them for medical or renewable energy applications.