Sustainable plant growth and reliable yield production are important requirements to deal with many future challenges of mankind. Plants are able to acclimate to a rapidly changing environment and thereby maintain fitness and high yield. They activate programmes just in time in order to minimize resource investment. Research at the Plant Biochemistry and Physiology Chair focuses on molecular mechanisms of plant acclimation to a changing environment.
The redox regulatory signaling network of the plant cell senses metabolic disequilibria and modulates the fast responses at transcriptional and translational levels. To this end we deepen our knowledge by identifying the upstream sensors and downstream targets within the network, dissecting retrograde control of nuclear gene expression by organellar signals and achieving a quantitative model of the redox regulatory network of the chloroplast. We characterize involved transcription factors, their interacting partners and activating signalling pathways. We develop novel tools to manipulate and measure single cell responses to a varying environment using thermomicrocapillaries or functionalized nanoparticles.
Since 1997 the chair of Plant Biochemistry and Physiology is held by Prof. Karl-Josef Dietz, following Prof. Wolfgang Kowallik. The Dietz lab is a member of the Faculty of Biology and is integrated into the CeBiTec (Center for Biotechnology) at Bielefeld University as part of the Institute for Genome Research and Systems Biology (IGS).