Project 1: Vitamin B6 Biology - Role of Vitamin B6 Homeostasis in Plant Development
We have identified key players that are critically important in vitamin B6 homeostasis regulation. Our on-going projects aim to elucidate the detailed molecular and genetic mechanism of how these players work together to sense, sore, and retrieve vitamin B6 during development.
Confocal images showing potential vitamin B6-dependent protein-protein interactions of ASP2
Project 2: Effective control of harmful algae blooming (HAB)
HAB is a major environmental problem all over the world. Currently, there is no effective and safe method to control this problem. In collaboration with Professor Weiming Wu (Chemistry and Biochemistry, SF State), we have been working to develop chemical compounds that can effectively control HAB. We have discovered a natural compound derivative that can effectively inhibit the growth of cyanobacteria Mycrocystis aeruginosa, the main algae strain that causes HAB in freshwater environments. The LC50 (lethal concentration that halves the growth) of this inhibitor is 0.03 mg/L. The chemical is derived from a natural product secreted by aqua plants as a chemical defense against algae. The new chemical has been found not to be toxic against plants, yeast, and animal cells. It is expected to be an effective agent against algae growth in lakes, ponds, pools, or tanks. We are interested in analyzing the mechanism of new compound's selective inhibition on Mycrocystis aeruginosa and extend our laboratory tests to actual field utilizations.
Project 3: Climate Change Biology
We are using biotechnology and genetic engineering to study how photosynthetic organisms like land plants and marine seaweeds can be used to provide effective solutions to combat climate changes.