Improving C4 photosynthesis by genetic manipulation
C4 plants turbocharge their photosynthetic process by using a biochemical pump to elevate CO2 deep in the leaves in the bundle sheath cells. There are exciting opportunities to improve this proces by manipulating the enzymes of carbon fixation, light capture and transduction and movement of metabolites from cell to cell. In our lab we can genetically transfrom Setaria, a C4 grass to test these effects.
Dr Susanne von Caemerer, Dr Maria Ermakova, and Dr Florence Danila work jointly on these projects in our labs. We are part of the Bill and Melinda Gates funded C4 Rice international consortium of 16 labs in 11 countries to install a C4 pathway into this important crop plant.