Anna Stepanova is Associate Professor of Plant Biology and Genetics at North Carolina State University, USA. She earned her BS and MS degrees in Biology from the University of Nevada, Reno, USA, and Lobachevsky State University of Nizhny Novgorod, Russia. For her PhD training, Anna joined the laboratory of Prof. Joseph Ecker at the University of Pennsylvania and The Salk Institute for Biological Studies, USA, to investigate nuclear events in ethylene signalling in Arabidopsis and characterize direct targets of the master transcriptional regulator EIN3. In 2001, Anna moved to North Carolina State University, where together with Jose Alonso, she initiated the study of hormone signal interactions using ethylene and auxin as her experimental system. Anna’s pioneering work has been instrumental to several ground-breaking discoveries in plant biology, including identification of the first complete route of auxin biosynthesis in plants, establishment of the critical role of local auxin production in plant development, determination of the key players in ethylene-auxin crosstalk, and characterization of a novel molecular mechanism that links ethylene perception to the activation of gene-specific translational control in plants. Anna’s current research continues to focus on plant hormones and leverages state-of-the-art technologies in molecular genetics and synthetic biology to build genetic devices to monitor and control hormone activity.
Department of Plant and Microbial Biology, Program in Genetics, North Carolina State University, USA
Talk title and synopsis
Building a synbio toolbox to monitor and control plant hormone activity.
Dr. Stepanova’s group has built a synthetic biology toolbox to enable rapid DNA-part assembly. Using this toolbox, a collection of multi-hormone transcriptional reporters and a series of CRISPR-based logic gate devices are being generated to examine and precisely control hormone activity in plants.