Professor Julian Hibberd Julian is Professor of Photosynthesis at the University of Cambridge. His work has focused on identifying the ancestral role of C4 proteins in C3 plants and alterations to the regulation of genes encoding these proteins. Currently, his laboratory works on both dicot and monocot lineages that contain C3 and C4 species, and combines the use of synthetic biology, high throughput sequencing analysis and bioinformatics. Experiments are informed by phylogenetic reconstructions, and the long term aim is to better understand evolution of the complex C4 phenotype.
Dr Lei Hua Lei is currently a postdoc in the Hibberd lab. He did his PhD in Prof. Chuanqing Sun’s lab at China Agricultural University where he identified and characterized a domestication gene controlling long and barbed awns in wild rice (Oryza rufipogon), the progenitor of cultivated rice (Oryza sativa). In the Hibberd lab, Lei is investigating transcriptomes and translatomes of rice mesophyll and bundle sheath cells using Laser Capture Microdissection (LCM).
Dr Ana Rita Borba Rita is currently a postdoc at the University of Cambridge under the supervision of Prof. Julian Hibberd. She obtained her PhD degree in Molecular Biology, with specialisation in Plant Sciences, from ITQB NOVA Institute in Portugal. During her PhD she identified and characterised transcriptional regulators of the NADP-ME gene involved in maize C4 photosynthesis. In the C4 Rice Project, she is investigating how photosynthesis activation can be achieved in rice bundle sheath cells.