Our lab combines computational and experimental approaches to reveal molecular mechanisms underlying adaptive strategies in plants. We focus on metabolic traits at multiple scales including individual genes, pathways, and networks. We also uncover novel functions, mechanisms, and pathways of 'unknown' genes (those that are not similar to any known genes), which is taking us to areas of research we never thought of studying before.
Helping plants grow as phosphorus levels in soil deplete
Michigan State University researchers have discovered a molecular mechanism that connects plant root growth to phosphorus availability.
Phosphorus is a natural mineral that is essential for plant growth and development, and Earth’s agricultural-grade phosphorus reserves are expected to be depleted in 50 to 100 years.
“Once the world’s supply is used up, we can’t make more phosphorus,” said Hatem Rouached, an assistant professor in Michigan State University’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and a member of the Plant Resilience Institute. “Ideally, we would like to be able to use less phosphorus in the soil to grow plants.”
Why should we study plants?
Introduction by Ruby Tebbutt, 2022 Summer Intern