Siddharth Jayaraman

Siddharth Jayaraman

Research Centre/Unit: Systems Biology

Project Summary

Systems Biology Project

Title Elucidating signalling networks in plant stress responses (SABR)

Principal Investigator Professor Murray Grant

Collaborators Professor Nick Smirnoff (University of Exeter)

Summary Plants respond to biotic and abiotic stress using a range of transcriptional and physiological response pathways many of which are shared between different stress stimuli. A crucial question is how plants switch between different stress responses and the balance of these response pathways when multiple stresses are perceived. In this project using systems modelling we propose to integrate the response pathways from three biotic (infection by Pseudomonas syringae, Hyaloperonospora parasitica, Botrytis cinerea) and two abiotic (drought and high light) stress responses in the leaf. Initially we will produce high resolution time course transcript profiles of our stress responses. We will cluster genes based on their temporal expression profiles. Using these data and prior information we will use state space modelling to create course grain network models. Networks common to more than one stress or containing key genes with different targets will be analysed further. A reiterative process will be used to verify the models by producing mutations or overexpression constructs for the nodal genes and measuring their consequence on gene expression and host plant phenotype. Promoter motif modelling will be used to aid in identification of gene regulatory networks. As the project develops we will focus on 2-4 networks to model at a higher resolution where we will identify and confirm the linkages between genes using a range of experimental techniques. We aim to produce a linking course grain network that models plant leaf responses to environmental stress and detailed models of 2-4 networks involved in switching between different stress responses.

Funding body BBSRC

Timescale 2008 to 2013