MJ 3-3 - Applications of Synchrotron Technology in Plant Biology Research

Monday, July 16
10:00 AM - 10:30 AM

While synchrotron techniques are powerful tools in material and environmental sciences, they are underutilized in plant research. Relative ease of sample preparation, non-destructive analysis, high spatial resolution and multiple response measurements within a single sample are among advantages.  Illustrations will include Fourier transform mid infrared spectromicroscopy, high resolution X-ray fluorescence imaging and X-ray absorption spectroscopy.  For example, auxin transporters from PIN-FORMED family of membrane proteins were recently implicated in plant responses to specific elemental exposure. Conventional elemental analysis of bulk tissues showed PIN2-deficient A. thaliana mutant exhibited large differences in arsenic root accumulation relative to wild-type when exposed to arsenite in the growth medium, but details of tissue distributions were unclear. Preliminary X-ray Fluorescence Imaging and X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy data in live plant samples demonstrated that the arsenic is localized in the root tip meristem of the mutant plant in the As(III) thiolate-bound form, and the pattern of As distribution in tissues is consistent with the hypothesis that PIN2 may indeed facilitate transportation of arsenicals in plants. Synchrotron-based phase contrast imaging was also combined with Fourier Transform mid-Infrared Spectroscopy to identify structural and biochemical factors localized to the apoplasts of florets and rachis in wheat resistant to Fusarium Head Blight.  Additional examples range from non-destructive imaging of corn roots in soil; spatial localization of protein secondary structure and compositional analysis of pollen surface lipids;  spatial localization of methyl-esterified homogalacturonan pectin of the apoplast and simultaneous non-destructive localization of multiple nutrients in leaves.  Mid-IR spectral corn leaf analysis indicated differential levels, composition of cuticular wax deposition among glossy lines.  Arabidopsis mutant and overproducing lines enabled identification of a gene critical for cuticular wax accumulation under low-temperature stress.  Multiple diverse plant systems including corn, wheat, Norway spruce buds, Arabidopsis will demonstrate use of synchrotron technology.



Tawhidur Rahman – University of Saskatchewan; kaila Hamilton – University of Saskatchewan; ian Willick – University of Saskatchewan; Rachid Lahlali – École Nationale d'Agriculture de Meknes; abidur rahman – Iwate University; Olena Ponomarenko – University of Saskatchewan; Nataliya Dolgova – University of Saskatchewan; Graham George – University of Saskatchewan; Ingrid Pickering – University of Saskatchewan; jorunn olsen – Norwegian University of Life Sciences; YeonKyeong Lee – Norwegian University of Life Sciences; Gurcharn Brar – University of Saskatchewan; Perumal Vijayan – University of Saskatchewan; Yunfei Jiang – University of Saskatchewan; Brian Fowler – University of Saskatchewan; Randy Kutcher – University of Saskatchewan; Tom Warkentin – University of Saskatchewan; Rosalind Bueckert – University of Saskatchewan; scott Rosendahl – Canadian Light Source; Stuart Read – Canadian Light Source; Chithra Karunakaran – Canadian Light Source

Karen Tanino

University of Saskatchewan

Karen Tanino is a professor at the University of Saskatchewan (UofS). She completed her B.Sc. (General Biology) in 1981 and M.Sc. (Crop Science) in 1983 at the University of Guelph, graduating with her Ph.D. (Horticulture Science) at Oregon State University in 1990. Since 1989, she has been a faculty member of the Department of Plant Sciences, College of Agriculture and Bioresources, UofS. In 2006-2007 she was Acting Associate Dean (Academic). Her area of research throughout her career has focussed on plant abiotic stress physiology and she was one of the first plant scientists to have used the Canadian Light Source (CLS) synchrotron. On the specific topic of synchrotron applications in plant biology, she has over seven refereed publications in the last four years alone. She has an active research program in both basic and applied areas with 14 projects ranging from the role of apoplastic and epicuticular barriers in plant stress avoidance, mechanisms of low light resistance, the role of plant stress in developmental processes, seed treatment to induce early germination and root growth, temperature-mediated bud dormancy induction, strawberry epigenetics, as well as projects addressing northern food security. She also initiated and founded the Prairie Horticulture Certificate Program, a home study based program across a consortium of four prairie universities and colleges with an enrolment of over 4000 students since its inception. She was the second person to have been designated Global Fellow of Iwate University (Japan), and is currently President of the Canadian Society for Horticultural Science


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MJ 3-3 - Applications of Synchrotron Technology in Plant Biology Research

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