Dr Marcus Heisler is a developmental biologist interested in pattern formation in plants. He did his PhD in the laboratory of Professor David Smyth at Monash University (Australia). Then he carried out his postdoctoral research in Elliot Meyerowitz’s lab at Caltech (California). After an appointment as Senior Research Associate at Caltech, he joined the EMBL in Heidelberg (Germany) as their first Australian group leader and first group leader to solely focus on plants. In 2017 Dr Heisler moved to the University of Sydney, where he is Associate Professor within the School of Life and Environmental Sciences.
“ The integration of mechanics, cell polarity and cell type patterning during Arabidopsis organogénesis”
Vascular plants create some of the most striking and diverse architectures in biology. From the fractal-like shapes of fern leaves to the spiral patterns of sunflowers. At the same time, many morphological characteristics are largely conserved, including the flat shape of leaves, the cylindrical shape of stems and the periodic patterns of organogenesis from the shoot apex.
Are there a core set of developmental mechanisms that can potentially explain much of this morphology? In this talk I discuss ongoing work from my lab focusing on several such developmental mechanisms and in particular, how they integrate with one another. These include feedback between mechanical stresses and interphase microtubule arrays, auxin and its transport and the role of adaxial-abaxial cell type boundaries.