Despite decades of functional genetics studies approximately 30% of the genes in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana remain uncharacterised. In order to identify previously uncharacterized essential cell processes we investigate meristem expressed, evolutionarily-conserved single copy Arabidopsis genes of unknown function. One such gene we recently identified is OPENER (OPNR). OPNR is required for cell proliferation and localizes to both nuclear envelope and mitochondria, but the function of OPNR is still unclear. In this project, you would join the study of the OPNR and associated proteins. The project involves genetic and phenotypic analysis of mutants, quantification of gene expression and subcellular localization of proteins. You would also become familiar with the latest technologies in Crispr/Cas9-based gene editing and gene localization, 3D structure analysis of mitochondria using focused ion beam scanning electron microscope, and FLIM-FRET based protein-protein interaction. 

Supervisor: Totte Niittylä, Dept of Forest Genetics and Plant Physiology, SLU.
Tel. 786 84 34. E-mail: totte.niittylä