Cell Biology and Plant Physiology

Fields of research

The major research focus of the group is on reproduction physiology of cereals and model plants. Research topics include:

  • Establishment of gametophyte / embryo polarity and cell identity
  • Fertilization mechanisms
  • Egg activation, parthenogenesis and prevention of polyspermy
  • Peptide ligand-receptor interactions
  • Modifying plant architecture and biomass yield
  • Genotype independent cereal transformation systems

Research projects

Non-standard methods and techniques established in the group include:

  • Microdissection and handling of single plant cells
  • Transcriptomics of single/few plant cells
  • Plant biotechnology: tissue culture, various transformation methods (transient & stable)
  • Various microscopic techniques including CLSM and DIC
  • Nano-sensors


  • Pioneer Hi-Bred Inc., Johnston, USA (Olga Danilevskaya); imprinting in maize
  • ACPFG LTD, Adelaide, Australia (Peter Langridge); development of transcriptional control sequences
  • University of Milan, Italy (Lucia Colombo); gamete-specific transcriptional regulators
  • University of Tokyo, Japan (Tetsuya Higashiyama); synergid transcriptome
  • University of Zagreb, Croatia (Dunja Leljak-Levanic); establishment of polarity
  • University of Zürich, Switzerland (Ueli Grossniklaus); egg transcriptome

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