Our research group mainly studies the metabolism and physiological functions of growth regulators, polyamines, and phenolic compounds in plants. We investigate the role of these biologically active compounds in plant development and in the response of plants to abiotic stresses.

In our experiments, we use diverse plant systems from whole plants to cell cultures. Our research is primarily focused on the somatic embryogenesis of conifers. Within this topic, we study the regulation of somatic embryo development, the role of phytohormones in somatic embryogenesis, and the effects of abiotic stresses on somatic embryos. We also deal with the in vitro propagation of medicinal cannabis. In particular, we investigate the effect of phytohormones (auxins and cytokinins) added to the culture medium on the process of organogenesis from segments of cannabis plants grown from seeds in vitro​​​​​.

We use a wide array of approaches:

  • Microscopy – light, confocal, and electron microscopy, enhanced by advanced computer image analysis

  • Biochemical methods – studies of activities of enzymes involved in the metabolism of biologically active compounds (e.g. radiometry)

  • Molecular biology methods – specific gene expressions, and transformation of tissue cultures

  • Analytical methods – qualitative and quantitative determination of biologically active compounds by gas- and liquid chromatography in tandem with mass spectroscopic detection (cooperation with the IEB Laboratory of Growth Regulators and Laboratory of Hormonal Regulations in Plants).

The impact of the application of compochar on soil moisture, stress, yield and nutritional properties of legumes under drought stress

Submitted by Kateřina Eliášová on Wed, 03/06/2024 - 16:15

Nowadays, when climate change is becoming more and more evident, drought stress plays a very important role, including in agriculture. The increasing number of years with extreme temperatures in the Czech Republic has a negative impact on agricultural production, among other things. Therefore, ways are being sought to reduce these negative impacts. One of them may be the use of compochar (a mixture of compost and biochar) to improve water retention in the soil.

Internal authors

Wholemount immunolabeling and stereological quantification of autophagosomes in Arabidopsis thaliana root epidermal cells

Submitted by Kateřina Eliášová on Wed, 03/06/2024 - 16:03

The workflow enables the quantification of autophagosomes in Arabidopsis thaliana root epidermal cells in 3D. It combines immunolabeling of an autophagosome marker ATG8 with commercially available anti-ATG antibody and the subsequent stereological quantification of the immunolabeled particles. The immunolabeled samples are imaged with a confocal microscope and Z-stacks are acquired.

Internal authors

A novel workflow for unbiased quantification of autophagosomes in 3D in Arabidopsis thaliana roots

Submitted by Kateřina Eliášová on Wed, 03/06/2024 - 15:46

Macroautophagy is often quantified by live imaging of autophagosomes labeled with fluorescently tagged ATG8 protein (FP-ATG8) in Arabidopsis thaliana. The labeled particles are then counted in single focal planes. This approach may lead to inaccurate results as the actual 3D distribution of autophagosomes is not taken into account and appropriate sampling in the Z-direction is not performed.

Internal authors

The FLOWERING LOCUS T LIKE 2-1 gene of Chenopodium triggers precocious flowering in Arabidopsis seedlings

Submitted by Kateřina Eliášová on Mon, 07/31/2023 - 11:40

The FLOWERING LOCUS T like 2–1 gene of Chenopodium ficifolium and Chenopodium quinoa acts as a strong activator of flowering in Arabidopsis, triggering flowering at cotyledon stage and causing lethality when overexpressed.

The humidity level matters during the desiccation of Norway spruce somatic embryos

Submitted by Kateřina Eliášová on Fri, 07/29/2022 - 09:57

In Norway spruce, as in many other conifers, the germination capacity of somatic embryos is strongly influenced by the desiccation phase inserted after maturation. The intensity of drying during desiccation eminently affected the formation of emblings (i.e., seedlings developed from somatic embryos). Compared to non-desiccated embryos, the germination capacity of embryos desiccated at 100% relative humidity was about three times higher, but the reduction of relative humidity to 95% and 90% had a negative effect on the subsequent embryo development.