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How to spot a Daisy

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Our study aims to investigate how petal spots develop in the model species Gorteria diffusa. Previous work has found there to be multiple “morphotypes” of the species which represent a series of natural mutations fixed within discrete populations. These allow for comparative analyses to be undertaken with the intention of elucidating the molecular regulation of spot generation. Some evidence suggests a role for MYB genes in the spot formation process hence comparative expression analyses (qPCR) and heterologous expression studies (Nicotiana tabacum, Senecio vulgaris) are being undertaken. Furthermore, multiple forms of microscopy (Light, TEM ) are being employed to further characterise the morphology of the spot in the hopes of identifying other candidate regulatory genes. Restriction site Associated DNA (RAD) sequencing is also being used to acquire high SNP coverage in an attempt to understand the relationship between the aforementioned morphotypes. It is hoped that through these diverse techniques a hypothetical model for spot formation may be found and subsequently perturbed for validation.

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

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