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Current projects

  • Regulation of developmental transitions by cytokinin
    The role of cytokinin in regulating developmental transitions such as seed germination, juvenile-to adult transition of leaves or the transition to flowering is as yet not well explored. Recently we have shown that cytokinin regulates the juvenile-to-adult transition of leaves through components of the age pathway. Work deciphering the molecular mechanisms of cytokinin action is ongoing. This project is led by Sören Werner. Other projects explore the fine-tuning of seed germination and flowering time by cytokinin (in collaboration with Isabel Bartrina, University of Graz).

The appearance of trichomes is a hallmark of
the juvenile-to-adult transition in Arabidopsis leaves.

Original article

Werner S., Bartrina, I., Schmülling T. (2021) Cytokinin regulates vegetative phase change in Arabidopsis thaliana through the miR172/TOE1-TOE2 module. Nature Communications 12, 5816. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-26088-z

  • Cytokinin action through transcriptional regulation
    Great part of the cytokinin signaling output is realized through the altered expression of cytokinin response genes. This is achieved through B-type response regulators (RRBs), which are transcription factors (TFs) of the Myb family. Interaction of RRBs with other TFs contributes to the variability and the specification of the transcriptional output. We have carried out a genome-wide yeast two-hybrid interaction screen of Arabidopsis RRBs with other TFs and are currently exploring the biological significance of some of these interactions. This project is led by Jan Erik Leuendorf.

Interaction of different transcription factors
modulates the transcriptional response to cytokinin.

Original articles

Leuendorf, J.E., Schmülling, T. (2021) Meeting at the DNA: Specifying cytokinin responses by modulating the transcriptional output. Plants 10, 1458. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10071458 

Brenner, W.G., Schmülling, T. (2015) Summarizing and exploring data of a decade of cytokinin-related transcriptomics. Front. Plant Sci. 6, 29. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2015.00029

Member of Dahlem Research School
Member of Dahlem Centre of Plant Sciences
Member of CRC 973