Dr. Sarah Guiziou. Earlham Institute. Norwich. UK
“An integrase toolbox to record gene-expression during plant development”
There are many open questions about the mechanisms that coordinate the dynamic, multicellular behaviors required for organogenesis. Synthetic circuits that can record in vivo signaling networks have been critical in elucidating animal development. We transferred this technology to plants using orthogonal serine integrases to mediate site-specific and irreversible DNA recombination visualized by switching between fluorescent reporters. When combined with promoters expressed during lateral root initiation, integrases amplify reporter signal and permanently mark all descendants. In addition, we developed a suite of methods to tune the threshold for integrase switching, including: RNA/protein degradation tags, a nuclear localization signal, and a split-intein system. These tools improve the robustness of integrase-mediated switching with different promoters and the stability of switching behavior over multiple generations. We are now using this integrase toolbox to build history-dependent circuits to decode the order of expression during organogenesis in many contexts.
Dr. Guiziou is a Career Development Fellow at the Earlham Institute in Dr. Nicola Patron group, working on developing a project on integrases to decode and recode plant development and plant mirobiota interaction. Sarah Guiziou earned her Ph.D. in synthetic biology working at the Centre de Biochimie Structurale of Montpellier under the supervision of Dr. Jerome Bonnet working on the engineering of logic circuits in bacteria. Interested in applying this work to the understanding of the development of multicellular organisms, Dr. Guiziou joined the plant synthetic biology lab of Prof. Jennifer Nemhauser from 2019 to 2022 as an EMBO Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Washington. She developed integrase tools to record gene expression during plant development.
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