Plants need highly efficient responses to adverse environmental conditions as they are bound to a single location.These adaptive processes are not only important in the acute phase of the stress but are in natural environments discriminative for plant fitness and in agricultural systems determining yield. Reprogrammed metabolism is an important part of stress adaption. Even small changes in metabolic reactions can cause dramatic changes in levels of key metabolites, which may change the physiology and growth of the plant.The long time goal of the group is to understand this highly dynamic network of metabolites, enzymes and most importantly - How is the adaptive growth of plants is regulated?

Hanson Johannes 1150Adverse conditions results often in limited energy availability and plant cells respond to this by reprograming their metabolism to better fit the new situation.This dramatic change involves hundreds of gene products and metabolites; we call this the Low Energy Syndrome, LES. The change is mastered by the SnRK1 kinase complex, which is able to react to lo levels of metabolizable sugars. This parallels the manner in which all eukaryotes regulate starvation responses. In plants the SnRK1 kinases regulate gene expression of genes encoding key meta- bolic enzymes by activating certain bZIP transcription factors. One of our projects focuses on these transcription factors.We are interested in their mode of action and how their activity is regulated.Technically we are using high throughput expression analysis (micro-arrays, massive sequencing) as central analysis ool combined with genetics and transgene based methods.

When conditions are favorable for plant growth the SnRK1 complex is deactivated and a second major signaling system takes over mastered by another kinase - The Target of rapamycin, TOR that is positively regulates growth in all eukaryotes.TOR does so partly by regulating translation, which is a very energy consuming process and is therefore tightly regulated.The second project in the laboratory deals with the regulatory mechanism of translational control by focusing on the activity of the ribo- some.We currently are identifying novel components involved in translational changes using transcriptomics, translatomics, proteomics and genetic methodology.

The growing population of this planet will change our socie- ty. It is clear that food, feed and other plant-based resources will be limiting in the future.The grand challenge is to increase plant production a sustainable way.The transition to less fossil fuel dependent production will challenge our agricultural systems even further. Consequently, there is a basic need to optimize plant growth.This can be done by changed growth practices and reducing post harvest losses, etc. However, we can not reach our goals without crop improvement, similarly to what happened during the green revolution half a decade ago.This is not limited to classical crops.We will need novel corps for biomass, bioenergy and biorefinery needs. By understanding the underlying mechanisms of growth control we hope to find new ways to improve plant based production.

Ribosome 880Translation is both a proxy for growth and a key determinant of growth speed. A) Translation is inhibited by 6h extended night and increased by sucrose treatments (6 h treatment of 100 mM sucrose), as indicated by increased relative levels of polysomes. Sucrose treatments compensate for the extended night treatment. B) Sugar treatment affects the ribosomal proteome as displayed by principal component analysis. Data generated by the analysis of the immunopurified ribosomal preparations from sugar treated and control leaves. Ellipses encircle technical replicates, green, control; red, sugar treated. The two components depicted represent 43% of the variation (Hummel et al. 2012).


Stress 880Low energy availability and stress activate signaling cascades in the plant, initiated by activation of the SnRK1 kinase and resulting in changed metabolism and growth – The Low Energy Syndrome (LES). The aspects of interests for us are indicated.
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Publications list

  1. Establishment of Photosynthesis through Chloroplast Development Is Controlled by Two Distinct Regulatory Phases
    Plant Physiol. 2018 Feb;176(2):1199-1214
  2. Combined transcriptome and translatome analyses reveal a role for tryptophan-dependent auxin biosynthesis in the control of DOG1-dependent seed dormancy
    New Phytol. 2018, 217 (3):1077-1085
  3. Differentially expressed genes during the imbibition of dormant and after-ripened seeds - a reverse genetics approach
    BMC Plant Biol. 2017, 17(1):151
  4. Establishment of photosynthesis is controlled by two distinct regulatory phases
    Plant Physiol. 2017 Jun 16 [Epub ahead of print]
  5. The Arabidopsis bZIP11 transcription factor links low-energy signalling to auxin-mediated control of primary root growth
    PLoS Genet. 2017 Feb 3;13(2):e1006607
  6. Shaping plant development through the SnRK1-TOR metabolic regulators
    Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2016, 35:152-157
  7. Extensive translational regulation during seed germination revealed by polysomal profiling
    New Phytol. 2017, 214(1):233-244
  8. The Arabidopsis TOR Kinase Specifically Regulates the Expression of Nuclear Genes Coding for Plastidic Ribosomal Proteins and the Phosphorylation of the Cytosolic Ribosomal Protein S6
    Front Plant Sci. 2016, 7:1611
  9. Quantitative phosphoproteomics reveals the role of the AMPK plant ortholog SnRK1 as a metabolic master regulator under energy deprivation
    Sci Rep. 2016, 6:31697
  10. The phylogeny of C/S1 bZIP transcription factors reveals a shared algal ancestry and the pre-angiosperm translational regulation of S1 transcripts
    Sci Rep. 2016 Jul 26;6:30444
  11. TOR Signaling and Nutrient Sensing
    Annu Rev Plant Biol. 2016, 67:261-285
  12. The Arabidopsis DELAY OF GERMINATION 1 gene affects ABSCISIC ACID INSENSITIVE 5 (ABI5) expression and genetically interacts with ABI3 during Arabidopsis seed development
    Plant J. 2016, 85(4):451-465
  13. Effects of Parental Temperature and Nitrate on Seed Performance are Reflected by Partly Overlapping Genetic and Metabolic Pathways.
    Plant Cell Physiol. 2016, 57(3):473-487
  14. SnRK1-triggered switch of bZIP63 dimerization mediates the low-energy response in plants
    Elife. 2015;4:e05828
  15. Rhizobacterial volatiles and photosynthesis-related signals coordinate MYB72 in Arabidopsis roots during onset of induced systemic resistance and iron deficiency responses
    Plant J. 2015, 84(2):309-322
  16. Crosstalk between Two bZIP Signaling Pathways Orchestrates Salt-Induced Metabolic Reprogramming in Arabidopsis Roots
    Plant Cell. 2015, 27(8):2244-2260
  17. Proteomic LC-MS analysis of Arabidopsis cytosolic ribosomes: Identification of ribosomal protein paralogs and re-annotation of the ribosomal protein genes
    J Proteomics. 2015, 128 436-449
  18. Increased sucrose levels mediate selective mRNA translation in Arabidopsis
    BMC Plant Biol. 2014, 14(1):306
  19. β-Glucosidase BGLU42 is a MYB72-dependent key regulator of rhizobacteria-induced systemic resistance and modulates iron deficiency responses in Arabidopsis roots
    New Phytol. 2014; 204(2):368-79
  20. Sugar signals and the control of plant growth and development
    J Exp Bot. 2014; 65(3):799-807
  21. ABI4: versatile activator and repressor
    Trends Plant Sci. 2012 Nov 19. [Epub ahead of print]
  22. Hummel M, Cordewener JH, de Groot JC, Smeekens S, America AH, Hanson J
    Dynamic protein composition of Arabidopsis thaliana cytosolic ribosomes in response to sucrose feeding as revealed by label free MS(E) proteomics
    Proteomics 2012 12(7):1024-38
  23. Ma J, Hanssen M, Lundgren K, Hernández L, Delatte T, Ehlert A, Liu C-M, Schluepmann H, Dröge-Laser W, Moritz T, Smeekens S, Hanson J
    The sucrose-regulated Arabidopsis transcription factor bZIP11 reprograms metabolism and regulates trehalose metabolism
    New Phytologist: 2011, 191:733–745
  24. Li P, Wind JJ, Shi X, Zhang H, Hanson J, Smeekens SC, Teng S
    Fructose sensitivity is suppressed in Arabidopsis by the transcription factor ANAC089 lacking the membrane-bound domain
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America: 2011 108:3436-3441
  25. Wind J, Smeekens S, Hanson J
    Sucrose: metabolite and signaling molecule
    Phytochemistry: 2010 71:1610-1614
  26. Smeekens S, Ma J, Hanson J, Rolland F
    Sugar signals and molecular networks controlling plant growth
    Current Opinion in Plant Biology: 2010 13:274-279
  27. Bentsink L, Hanson J, Hanhart CJ, Blankestijn-de Vries H, Coltrane C, Keizer P, El-Lithy M, Alonso-Blanco C, de Andres MT, Reymond M, et al.
    Natural variation for seed dormancy in Arabidopsis is regulated by additive genetic and molecular pathways
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Science of the United States of America: 2010 107:4264-4269
  28. Hanson J, Smeekens S
    Sugar perception and signaling--an update
    Current Opinion in Plant Biology: 2009 12:562-567
  29. Hummel M, Rahmani F, Smeekens S, Hanson J
    Sucrose mediated translational control
    Annals of Botany: 2009 104:1-7
  30. Rahmani F, Hummel M, Schuurmans J, Wiese-Klinkenberg A, Smeekens S, Hanson J
    Sucrose control of translation mediated by a uORF encoded peptide
    Plant Physiology: 2009 150:1356-1367
  31. Weltmeier F, Rahmani F, Ehlert A, Dietrich K, Schütze K, Wang X, Chaban C, Hanson J, Teige M, Harter K, Vicente-Carbajosa J, Smeekens S, Dröge-Laser W
    Expression patterns within the Arabidopsis C/S1 bZIP transcription factor network: availability of heterodimerization partners controls gene expression during stress response and development
    Plant Molecular Biology: 2009 69:107-19
  32. Hanson J, Hanssen M, Wiese A, Hendriks MM, Smeekens S
    The sucrose regulated transcription factor bZIP11 affects amino acid metabolism by regulating the expression of ASPARAGINE SYNTHETASE1 and PROLINE DEHYDROGENASE2
    Plant Journal: 2008 53:935-49.
  33. Henriksson E, Olsson AS, Johannesson H, Johansson H, Hanson J, Engström P, Söderman E
    Homeodomain leucine zipper class I genes in Arabidopsis. Expression patterns and phylogenetic relationships
    Plant Physiology: 2005 139:509-518
  34. Johannesson H, Wang Y, Hanson J, Engström P
    The Arabidopsis thaliana homeobox gene ATHB5 is a potential regulator of abscisic acid responsiveness in developing seedlings
    Plant Molecular Biology: 2003 51:719-29
  35. Hanson J, Regan S, Engström P
    The expression pattern of the homeobox gene ATHB13 reveals a conservation of transcriptional regulatory mechanisms between Arabidopsis and hybrid aspen
    Plant Cell Reports: 2002 21:80-89
  36. Hanson J, Johannesson H, Engström P
    Sugar-dependent alterations in cotyledon and leaf development in transgenic plants expressing the HDZip gene ATHB13
    Plant Molecular Biology: 2001 45:247-62