BIOL 385 (Fall)

Plant Growth and Development

(Not offered in 2017-2018)

3 credits (3-0-6)

This course focuses on physiological, biochemical and molecular genetic bases of plant growth and development. Topics covered include modular body plan of higher plants, signal perception and transduction, plant hormones, mutation genetics as a tool to study development, features of growth of the plant body and its organs, initiation and development of plant organs, transition to flowering, and senescence and death. Plant development under some environmental extremes, and manipulation of plant growth and development for agronomic purposes are briefly dealt with.

I.  Introductory topics

                      Introduction to the course
                      Introduction to plant body: Alternation of generations
                      Introduction to higher plant body: Modular structures
                      Cell structure and cell water
                      Signal perception and transduction
                      Phytohormones and growth regulators
                      Molecular genetic basis of growth and development

II. Seed germination and growth

                    Seed germination
                    Cell division and its role in growth
                    Seedling growth and secondary growth
                    Hormonal and environmental control of growth

III. Development of the body

                    Development – General features
                    Cell wall and cell development
                    Cell-intrinsic and –extrinsic information
                    Plant meristems
                    Shoot apex and development
                    Root apex and development
                    Leaf development
                    Flowering time
                    Flower development
                    Pollination and fertilization
                    Fruit development and ripening
                    Embryogenesis, fruit development and ripening
                    Innate immunity and memory in plants
                    Programmed cell death and senescence

IV. Plant Interaction with stressful environment

                    Plant Environment
                    Plant responses to pests and pathogens
                    Plant responses to heavy metals
                    Plant responses to oxidative stress

3 hours lecture per week
Recommended text is Plant Physiology by Taiz and Zeiger, 4th Edition (2006), (Sinauer Associates).
Other books of interest:

1. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology of Plants by Buchanan et al. (2000), American Society of Plant Biologists.
2. Molecular Plant Development: From Gene to Plant by Westhoff et al. (1996) German Edition, translated into English in 1998, published by Oxford University Press.
3. Mechanisms in Plant Development by Leyser and Day (2003), Blackwell Publishing.

Two mid-term tests and a final exam.    
Last update: March 22, 2017

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