Bruna Rafaella Zanardi Palermo
PhD Student (2017- )
The role of YABBY genes in the development of tendrils in Passiflora spp.
The genus Passiflora assembles species of lianas that use tendrils to climb surfaces and other plants in search of light. Tendrils are filiform organs with indeterminate growth, produced in the adult phase concomitantly with the floral buds. There is some debate in the literature concering the identity of tendrils. Sometimes they are viewed as modified leaves or modified flowers. Tendrils are cilindrical structures but it is not known whether they are adaxialized or abaxialized organs. In the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, transcription factors of the HD-ZIP Class III family (such as the REVOLUTA, PHABULOSA and PHAVOLUTA) are responsible for determining the adaxial identity. Abaxial identity is determined by the YABBY and KANADI gene families. Mutations in the ortologs of these genes in Arabidopsis are known to cause alterations in the abaxial/adaxial pattern of lateral organs. Our aim is to investigate whether Passiflora tendrils are adaxialized or abaxialized structures.