Molecular plant development and metabolism

Our research main aim is focused in acquiring a deeper knowledge of the molecular mechanisms that rule the flowering process, particularly those related with the photoperiodic pathway and a poorly known metabolic influence on flowering. It will also have an important biochemical base, an approach that has been scarcely used in the past in plant reproduction but very appealing now due to the newly developed tools of massive data treatment. The correct decision to flower is crucial for the success of the offspring and thus has been finely tuned during evolution as a complex regulatory network. Flowering time has been also selected by farmers for centuries as an important trait during the domestication of the main crops that constitute the base of human food. Thus, it has enormous basic research interest but also biotechnological applications because it determines the production of seeds which is the base of many food, biofuel and industrial goods. The photoperiodic signal to flower is important because it coordinates several external cues to generate the so-called florigen. The florigen is a mobile signal produced in the leaves that moves through the vascular tissue to reach the apical meristem where it activates the program to transform it into a flower. The florigen has an enormous applied potential because its capacity to enhance flowering in cultivars and increase harvest benefits.

- Evolution of photoperiod response in microalgae and plants.

- Deepen into the relationship between photoperiod sensing and metabolism.

- Find new elements of photoperiod signalling through massive data acquisition approaches.

- Modelling of the photoperiod response with new mathematical systems.

Proyecto de excelencia de la Junta de Andalucía (P08-AGR-035829), Proyecto Intramural CSIC-200920I181, Proyecto BIO2007-61837 MICINN
Selected Publications
Type: Publications in journals
The Arabidopsis E3 Ubiquitin Ligase HOS1 Negatively Regulates CONSTANS Abundance in the Photoperiodic Control of Flowering
Authors: Lázaro A., Valverde F., Piñeiro M., Jarillo J.A.
Publication Year: 2012
Pages: 982-999
Journal: Plant Cell
Volume: 24
Type: Publications in journals
CONSTANS and the evolutionary origin of photoperiodic timing of flowering (review)
Authors: Valverde, F.
Publication Year: 2011
Pages: 2453-2463
Journal: Journal of Experimental Botany
Volume: 62