|Name||Bennett, Alan B.|
Ph.D. (1982), Plant Physiology |
|Specialty||Molecular biology of tomato fruit development; molecular basis of membrane transport; and protein targeting to the cell wall and vacuole.|
|Location||101 Mann Lab|
My lab is actively investigating the mechanisms of fruit softening with a goal of developing molecular genetic strategies to modify this process as a means of improving fruit quality. In tomato, a single enzyme, polygalacturonase, has been implicated as a determinant of pectin degradation and tissue softening that accompanies ripening. To determine the biochemical role of polygalacturonase in the ripening process we cloned its gene and have characterized the molecular basis of its regulation in normal and ripening-impaired tomato mutants. To examine its function in vivo we constructed a chimeric gene possessing regulatory elements from an ethylene-inducible gene and the structural gene of polygalacturonase.
As a component of our research on cell wall-degrading enzymes we have developed a broad interest in protein targeting within the endomembrane system (E.R., Golgi, plasma membrane, tonoplast) of plant cells.
In addition, my laboratory has maintained an active interest in the molecular basis of membrane transport at the plasma membrane and tonoplast of plant cells. This initially involved the development of assays to characterize biochemical and biophysical properties of H+ -ATPases. To gain additional insight into structural and functional features of plant cell H+ -ATPases we recently isolated cDNA clones corresponding to the plasma membrane H+ -ATPase and to a putative Ca2+-ATPase. This represents a major step in a continuing program now focusing on the molecular biology of membrane transport in plants.
|Campus||UC Davis Faculty|