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Laboratory of molecular and cellular biology

Head of the laboratory — Viktor Evgen’evich TSYGANOV, Candidate of Biological Sciences

V.E. Tsyganov Laboratory of Molecular and Cellular Biology was founded in 2006 as a result of fusion of two research groups that had been separated from the Laboratory of genetics of plant-microbe interactions and the Laboratory of rhizospheric biology, with the Electron microscopy Group. The formation of the laboratory was dictated by the need to increase research level in the field of cell and molecular biology in ARRIAM.
Our research studies involve different legume species, including model legumes such as Lotus japonicus and Medicago truncatula. The special attention is given to the classical object of plant genetics and the important legume crop in Europe - Pisum sativum.

Research Projects

The research activity of our laboratory is focused on three major topics:

The study of molecular-genetic and structural mechanisms of cell differentiation upon symbiotic nodule development.

Nodule Cell The existence of two cell types in nodules – infected and non-infected cells - raises a question about the mechanisms of cell differentiation during nitrogen-fixing nodule development. Our research studies involve vast collection of pea symbiotic mutants having defects at different stages of symbiosis development. The role of different bioactive substances (such as hydrogen peroxide, nitrogen oxide NO, chromosaponin I and others) in symbiotic nodule development is under intensive study as well. The great attention is paid to the study of different cell structure reorganisation (first of all, cytoskeleton) upon nodule development.

The study of molecular-genetic and cellular mechanisms of adaptation of legume plants and their symbiotic systems to stress factors.

crt Symbiotic systems formed by legume plants on the one hand are sensitive to different stress factors and on the other hand they allow plants to increase their adaptive properties upon unfavorable conditions. Our studies are focused on several model stress factors: high density soil and cadmium, the role of ‘stress’ hormone ethylene is under our investigation as well.
Our investigation involves appropriate genetic models – pea mutant SGEcrt, exhibiting increased sensitivity to substrate density (Tsyganov et al., 2000) and pea mutant SGECdt, demonstrating increased tolerance to toxic cadmium concentration and cadmium accumulation in biomass (Tsyganov et al., 2007).

The study of signaling events upon legume-Rhizobium symbiosis.

chi3 Research interest of the group focuses on signal exchange between nodule bacteria and legume plants. To study mechanisms of Nod-factor reception we are developing approaches for heterologous expression of receptor proteins in microorganisms, as well as expression in homologous system - in plants (transgenic technologies) and subsequent analysis of ligand-binding affinity of the receptors. The ligand-binding assay of receptor proteins will allow us to determine their specificity and affinity to Nod-factors. Another topic of the group research is the investigation of major transcription regulators of Nod-factor-depending signaling and cytokinine-dependent signaling pathway, studying their expression dynamics and localization upon nodule development.