#PhDart — Flower Development Matters

Being a plant lover since I was little, I have always been fascinated by the enormous diversity of floral architectures. Now in the Kramer lab at Harvard University, I began to explore this diversity by asking how Aquilegia species build their flowers. My research interests lie in the genetic networks that embellished the lineage-specific characters in Aquilegia; in particular, the programs that give rise to the petal spurs and the novel floral organ, staminodium.

Stories_insci Stories_insci on January 29, 2019

Min Ya

About
Being a plant lover since I was little, I have always been fascinated by the enormous diversity of floral architectures. Now in the Kramer lab at Harvard University, I am exploring this diversity by asking how Aquilegia species build their flowers. My research interests lie in the genetic networks that embellished the lineage-specific characters in Aquilegia; in particular, the programs that give rise to the petal spurs and the novel floral organ, staminodium. Below is my response to the #PhDArt twitter challenge where I depict my research in a drawing. Follow me @0_minyaaa

Flowering plants are plants that make flowers. They are the most diverse group of land plants and one of the most successful groups of organisms on the planet, which can be found in practically every conceivable habitat. Although we see an enormous diversity of floral morphologies in nature, all flowers started out from a simple dome of cells, and most flowers are only composed of four different organ types: sepal, petal, stamen, and carpel. Therefore, the seemingly infinite variety of floral forms is generated mainly by variation in the number, arrangement, identity, and elaboration of the organs. For centuries, numerous naturalists devoted their careers to classifying the patterns and organizations in flowers, and identifying the sources that generated the diversity, but it was only until about 30 years ago, the developmental genetic basis for this variability started to be unveiled. The field of flower development investigates the molecular basis of every step in making a flower: what are the genes controlling the steps, what are their specific functions, and how do they interact? So far, we have a good idea of some major aspects in flower development, such as what genes determine different floral organ identities and what genes control organ colors, but for many other important aspects, we are just beginning to explore. Understanding of flower development is of significant importance to us, as human life depends to a large extent on the fruits and seeds that flowers produce. What’s more, it’s just simply exciting to know what generated the diversity of flowers in nature, as our appreciation of flowers can be probably dated back to the earliest days of civilization — flowers just appeal to the aesthetics in us, and we want to understand them.

Metrics

Sessions

24

Total number of Sessions. A session is the period time a user is actively engaged with the page.

Visitors

26

Users that have had at least one session within the selected date range. Includes both new and returning users.

Page views

40

Pageviews is the total number of time the article was viewed. Repeated views are counted.

#PhDart — Flower Development Matters
Please rate the impact factor of this story.
0