Molecular and genomic analysis of fruit development and ripening.
CALS Impact Statement
The focus of research in the Giovannoni laboratory is molecular and genetic analysis of fruit ripening and related signal transduction systems with emphasis on the relationship of fruit ripening to nutritional quality. We are also involved in development of tools for genomics of the Solanaceae including participation in the international tomato genome sequencing project. We employ several experimental systems but the majority of our work involves the use of tomato. The broad objectives of the lab include deciphering the underlying molecular basis of components of ripening regulation conserved through evolution and how these regulatory networks coordinate ripening events including those related to quality and nutritional content. Experimental approaches include 1) positional cloning of loci known via mutation to harbor genes necessary for normal fruit development and ripening and 2) isolation of candidate ripening regulatory genes based on expression pattern or relationship to ripening-related signal transduction systems (e.g. ethylene, light), and functional analysis in transgenic plants.
We engage in basic research directed at the long term food quality, food security and nutritional quality needs of the US and developing world.
We continue to engage in basic research directed at elucidating the genetic mechanisms regulation plant metabolic pathways impacting human health and nutriton using tomato as a model system.
This is basic research with likely but long term impacts. Recent impacts are related to graduation of trained students, creation of research tools and knowledge used by other researchers, and development of DNA markers useful in plant breeding.