Title: "Biologiocal Significance of Natural Ionomic Variation in Arabidopsis thaliana"
Speaker: David E Salt, Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, Purdue University
Place: HORT 117; December 8, 2009, Tuesday, 4:30pm


Understanding how organisms control their ionome or mineral nutrient and trace element composition, could have a significant impact on both plant and human health. Furthermore, associating the genetic determinants that underlie natural ionomics variation, with the landscape of the individuals that carry these genotypes, will provide insight into the genetic basis of adaptation and speciation. We have employed high-throughput mineral nutrient and trace element profiling, coupled with genetic analyses, as a tool to determine the biological significance of connections between an organism's genome and its ionome. We have identified genetic loci that control the natural variation observed in the accumulation of sodium (Na), molybdenum (Mo) and cobalt (Co) in Arabidopsis thaliana. We have also identified genetic variation within a regulator network that coordinately controls the accumulation of several elements, including calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), potassium (K), iron (Fe) and nickel (Ni), and forward genetic approaches are starting to dissect the mechanism that underlie this network. To maximize the value of this ionomics approach, we have also developed a publicly searchable online database containing over 2,000,000 ionomic data elements from over 1500 different experiments (www.ionomicshub.org), and the database is being updated regularly.

Recommended Reading:
Salt DE, Baxter I, Lahner B. Ionomics and the study of the plant ionome. Annu Rev Plant Biol. 2008;59:709-33. Review. PubMed PMID: 18251712.

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