We are currently advertising DTP and CASE studentships for October 2019 start. The deadline for applications is the 26th November 2018.

27 / 09 / 2018

Mechanisms Controlling Plant Cell Polarity and Growth (COEN_J19DTP)

how to apply

Cell polarity is of fundamental importance for growth and cell division in plants.  For example, the BASL protein is localised to one end of stomatal precursors and plays a critical role in asymmetric division and stomatal spacing. More recently we have shown that ectopic expression of BASL, reveals coordinated cell polarity throughout the growing Arabidopsis leaf.  However, the mechanisms by which cell polarity is established and influences growth is still unclear.  The aim of this project is to use a combination of live imaging, gene induction, tissue culture and cell biology techniques to probe the underlying mechanisms.  It will build on our recent finding that cell polarity can be established in single cell cultures, opening up the possibility of investigating the key mechanistic steps for polarity control from single cells through to cellular filaments and complex tissues.  


Mansfield, C., Newman, J.L., Olsson, T.S.G., Hartley, M., Chan, J., and Coen, E. (2018). Ectopic BASL Reveals Tissue Cell Polarity throughout Leaf Development in Arabidopsis thaliana. Current Biology 28, 2638-2646.

Robinson, S., Barbier de Reuille, P., Chan, J., Bergmann, D., Prusinkiewicz, P., and Coen, E. (2011). Generation of spatial patterns through cell polarity switching. Science 333, 1436-1440.