University of Cambridge > > Plant Sciences Research Seminars > Evolution and Diversity of MIXTA-like genes

Evolution and Diversity of MIXTA-like genes

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Conical petal cells, controlled by MIXTA -like Myb transcription factors, are important in plant-pollinator interactions. My work aims to investigate the selective pressures for and against conical cells, as well as the molecular basis of conical cell evolution. To understand the pollinator-mediated selection behind the persistence of conical cells in simple flowers, I have tested isogenic Petunia lines under different handling and visual conditions and show how differing conditions can alter pollinator preference. To understand conditions where selective pressure is no longer in favour of conical cells, I have investigated the multiple losses of conical cells across the buzz-pollinated genus Solanum. I explain why, where and how conical cell loss has occurred in Solanum through phylogenetic analysis and morphological characterisation, combined with my molecular characterisation of Solanum MIXTA -like genes.

This talk is part of the Plant Sciences Research Seminars series.

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