Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

About the PNAS Member Editor
Name Bartel, Bonnie
Location Rice University
Primary Field Genetics
Secondary Field Plant Biology
 Election Citation
Bartel has pioneered the understanding of fundamental aspects of plant biology by using molecular genetics to discover and dissect the regulation of the growth hormone auxin, the presence and specific functions of plant microRNAs, and the multiple roles, biogenesis, and turnover of peroxisomes
 Research Interests
Bonnie Bartel's research group has contributed to understanding of auxin metabolism and microRNA functions and currently investigates the biogenesis, functions, and degradation of peroxisomes in Arabidopsis thaliana. The growth hormone auxin controls virtually all facets of plant development. Bartel's laboratory identified enzymes releasing auxin from precursors, discovered compartmentalization of auxin production in the endoplasmic reticulum and peroxisomes, and revealed the importance of different auxin sources during seedling development. Their discovery of a peroxisome-based pathway of auxin biosynthesis led her to explore the biogenesis, functions, and dynamics of this vital organelle. Peroxisomes compartmentalize critical metabolic reactions, thereby protecting the cytosol from oxidative damage. Through isolating and characterizing a suite of peroxisome-defective Arabidopsis mutants, Bartel's group has discovered organelle import factors, essential interdependencies among biogenesis components, and degradative pathways that control organelle remodeling.

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