Donna E. Fernandez
Position title: Professor Emerita of Botany
B215 Birge Hall
- Ph.D. (1987) University of Colorado-Boulder
- Fernandez Lab
- Research Interests
- Plant cell and developmental biology, molecular aspects of plant reproduction
My primary interest is in the molecular and cellular basis of developmental transitions in plants. In past projects, we investigated the role of MADS domain factors in the regulation of flowering time, floral organ abscission, and pollen growth and development. In current projects, we are investigating protein sorting during plastid biogenesis. Plastids are transformed from relatively undifferentiated proplastids into a variety of differentiated forms (chloroplasts, chromoplasts, amyloplasts, etc.) through changes in protein composition and membrane organization. This is mediated by targeting and translocation systems that ensure the proteins are directed to the right place at the right time. We typically use Arabidopsis for these studies because of its power as a genetic system.