XIX Brazilian Congress of Plant Physiology


The following speakers have been invited to give a presentation at the congress:

Dr. John Lunn

Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology (Germany)

Dr. John Lunn has an interest in understanding the complexities of plant metabolism and growth regulation, focusing on sugar-signalling pathways, driven by the long-term goal of understanding carbon allocation at the whole-plant level. Dr. Lunn’s work plays a pivotal role in enhancing crop productivity, with a special emphasis on the fate of carbon fixed during photosynthesis.

Dr. Jaume Flexas

University of Balearic Islands (Spain)

Dr. Jaume Flexas has an interest in understanding plant ecophysiology, with a primary emphasis on the dynamic processes of photosynthesis. His research delves into the mechanisms of photosynthetic efficiency, especially under stress conditions. Dr. Flexas explores how plants adapts to environmental challenges, striving to uncover strategic approaches for enhancing plant performance in our ever-changing climate.

Dr. Andreas Weber

Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (Germany)

Dr. Andreas P M Weber has an interest in understanding plant biochemistry and metabolic pathways. His work aims, at a systems-level, understanding the photorespiration, C4 photosynthesis, and the regulatory principles that govern plant metabolic networks. His work is pivotal in advancing our understanding of plant metabolism and identifying potential targets for improving crops. Dr. Weber’s research contributes significantly to optimizing crop yield and enhancing stress tolerance.

Dr. Elizabete Carmo-Silva

Lancaster University (United Kingdom)

Dr. Elizabete Carmo Silva has an interest in understanding the molecular physiology of plants, with a particular focus on the regulation of carbon assimilation by Rubisco in crop plants. Her work aims to elucidate molecular mechanisms that underlie photosynthesis, contributing to enhanced crop photosynthetic capacity to optimise the sustainability and climate resilience of crop production.

Dr. Stefan Timm

University of Rostock (Germany)

Dr. Stefan Timm has an interest in understanding regulatory aspects of central carbon and amino acid metabolism. His research spans redox-regulation and metabolite signalling mechanisms between the different metabolic branches. Dr. Timm’s work significantly contributes to comprehending the potential role of photorespiratory metabolites in adjusting plant metabolism in response to changes in prevailing environmental conditions.

Dr. Christine Scoffoni

California State University Los Angeles (USA)

Dr. Christine Scoffoni has an interest in understanding plant ecophysiology, with a specific emphasis on the physiological and ecological adaptations of plants across diverse environmental conditions. Her research encompasses a broad range of topics related to plant hydraulics, leaf venation architecture, species adaptation to drought, and to the evolution of plant traits. Dr. Scoffoni’s work plays an important role in advancing the understanding of how plants adapt to environmental stresses and highlights the role of plant diversity in ecological function.

Dr. Sandra J. Bucci

National University of Patagonia (Argentina)

Dr. Sandra J. Bucci has an interest in understanding plant physiological and ecosystem responses to various global change factors, including water availability, extreme weather events, increased temperature, and nitrogen deposition. With a primary focus on gas exchange, hydraulic traits, and water uptake, Dr. Bucci’s work plays a pivotal role in advancing the understanding of plant science. Her research not only contributes to the broader field of plant physiology but also offers valuable insights for developing sustainable strategies in agriculture and conservation.

Dr. Rafael Silva Oliveira

State University of Campinas (Brazil)

I’m broadly interested in understanding the functional mechanisms underlying ecological patterns and processes. My specific focus is on understanding how environmental variability influences plant hydraulic properties and how these properties influence resilience to drought across different scales—from individual plants to entire ecosystems. Our ongoing research projects employ a mechanistic approach grounded in plant ecophysiology to support and inform ecosystem restoration initiatives. 

Dr. Augusto César Franco

University of Brasília (Brazil)

Dr. Augusto Cesar Franco is interested in understanding how plants perceive and interact with the environment and in the processes underlying plant responses to the interplay between biotic and abiotic factors. His research explores both functional and structural adaptations in plants, and the ecology and evolution of plant physiological processes with focus on water relations, carbon metabolism and resource use. Dr. Franco’s work contributes to advancing our knowledge of the dynamic relationships between plants and the environment and of plant adaptation to varying environmental conditions.

Dr. Angus Murphy

University of Maryland (USA)

Dr. Angus Murphy has an interest in understanding the complexities of phytohormone auxin movement and its role to regulate programmed and plastic plant development. His research also explores the transport of aromatic acids pivotal in plant/fungal growth processes. Dr. Murphy’s work contributes to the comprehension of how these processes respond to environmental inputs and biotic and abiotic stresses.

Dr. Maria Eugenia Zanetti

National University of La Plata (Argentina)

Dr. Maria Eugenia Zanetti has an interest in understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying the symbiotic relationship between legume plants and nitrogen-fixing bacteria, known as rhizobia. Her research focused on characterizing transcriptional gene regulatory networks governed by NF-Y and GRAS class of transcription factors during root nodule symbiosis. Additionally, she explores post-transcriptional events, including translational control, mRNA decay, and the roles of long non-coding RNAs and small RNA-mediated effects. These investigations contribute to a comprehensive understanding of gene expression regulation during the development of nitrogen-fixing nodules and lateral roots.

Dr. Naomi Ori

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel)

Dr. Naomi Ori has an interest in understanding the mechanisms underlying plasticity of plant development and patterning, leaf, flower and fruit development. Her research focus on the investigation of the balance between morphogenesis, growth and differentiation in leaf development, and the interaction between transcription factors and hormones in regulating this balance. Additionally, Dr. Ori’s extends her research to understanding the regulators of leaf patterning, as well as delving into the regulation of fruit set in tomatoes.

Dr. Maria Laura Vidoz

Botanical Institute of the Northeast (Argentina)

María Laura Vidoz is passionate about exploring the remarkable resilience of plants in the face of countless environmental challenges. Her research primarily focuses on how eggplant and tomato plants respond to flooding stress at physiological, hormonal, and morphological levels to uncover the traits contributing to stress tolerance. She is also interested in studying how plants react hormonally to specific environmental cues, which can cause significant changes in morphogenesis, even without stress.

Dr. José Jiménez-Gómez

Polytechnic University of Madrid (Spain)

Dr. José Jiménez Gómez has an interest in understanding the molecular basis of plant adaptive mechanisms. His research uses a combination of genomics, genetics and molecular biology to study the genetic foundations of plant evolution, with a special focus in crop domestication. Dr. Jiménez-Gómez’s work contributes to the knowledge on the genes and proteins responsible for the variation observed in the world today to help breeding better crops in the future.

Dr. Luciano Freschi

University of São Paulo (Brazil)

Dr. Luciano Freschi’s research interests lie in dissecting the complex signaling networks responsible for coordinating plant development and metabolism in a constantly changing environment. His research is dedicated to investigating and manipulating the molecular basis underlying plant responses to light, temperature, water availability, and other abiotic cues.

Dr. Raquel Chan

UNL-CONICET Joint Research Institutes (Argentina)

Dr. Rachel Chan’s research focuses on plant adaptation to environmental stress, spanning from molecular mechanisms like transcription factors to field trials of modified crops. With a rich academic background and numerous awards, she is a leading figure in agrobiotechnology and scientific leadership in Latin America.

Yunde Zhao

University of California San Diego (USA)

Dr. Yunde Zhao is renowned for his breakthroughs in plant biology, particularly his contribution to solving the complete auxin biosynthetic pathway and its crucial role in plant development. Serving as Editor-in-Chief of Plant Physiology, he has pioneered gene editing-related technologies including ribozyme-based guide RNA production and the Transgene-Killer CRISPR technology. His invention of RUBY, a synthetic gene for betalain synthesis, facilitates plant transformation and gene expression visualization. With pioneering contributions to gene editing technologies and a highly cited researcher, he is recognized globally for his significant contributions to the field.

Dr. Tamar Avin-Wittenberg

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel)

Dr. Tamar Avin Wittenberg has an interest in understanding how plants degrade cellular components for energy production, especially in non-photosynthetic tissues and under stress conditions. Her research focuses on the investigation of autophagy mechanisms using molecular and metabolomic approaches. Dr. Avin-Wittenberg contributes to a deeper comprehension of how plants manage cellular degradation.

Dr. Jorge Gago

University of Balearic Islands (Spain)

Dr. Jorge Gago has an interest in understanding plant ecophysiology, with a particular emphasis on plants thriving in extreme environments. His research focuses on the study of the trade-off between productivity and stress tolerance in plants, employing a systems biology approach that integrates molecular to whole-plant biological levels. Dr. Gago’s work contributes to both understanding and optimizing plant responses to diverse environmental challenges.

Isabel Egea

Centre for Applied Soil Science and Biology of the Segura - CEBAS (Spain)

Dr. Isabel Egea has a diverse academic journey spanning fruit quality research to omics tools in tomato ripening. Nowadays, her research is focused on abiotic stress tolerance in tomato, and natural genetic diversity. 

Dr. Jürgen Zeier

Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (Germany)

Dr. Jürgen Zeier has an interest in understanding the molecular and biochemical basis of plant-environment interactions. His research focuses on systemic acquired resistance, a plant immune response that confers broad-spectrum immunity and primes plants to effectively fend off pathogen attacks. Dr. Zeier’s work advances the comprehension of stress- and hormone-inducible phytochemical diversity and provides valuable insights into the biochemistry and function of stress-inducible metabolic pathways in plants.

Dr. Leonardo De La Fuente

Auburn University (USA)

Dr. Leonardo De La Fuente has an interest in understanding the interactions between plants and associated microorganisms. His research is centered on investigating plant pathogenic bacteria, delving into aspects such as infection processes, host colonization, biofilm formation, and the molecular interactions. Dr. De La Fuente’s work contributes to the understanding of the molecular intricacies governing infection processes and host responses.

Dr. Marcelo Lattarulo Campos

Federal University of Mato Grosso (Brazil)

Professor in the Botany and Ecology department at UFMT. He works with the interaction between plants and insects, seeking to understand the consequences of the attack on plant physiology, focusing on the study of how plant hormones activate defense responses.

Dr. Elizabeth P.B. Fontes

Federal University of Viçosa (Brazil)

Dr. Elizabeth Fontes focuses her research on plant defense signaling pathways against biotic and abiotic stresses, particularly in antiviral immunity and adaptive plant responses to drought and cell death signals. Her team has mainly focused on the plant immune system and complex networks of adaptive responses that integrate signals from endoplasmic reticulum stress, water deficit, and programmed cell death. More recently, she has focused on elucidating the cross-talk between the antiviral signaling pathway mediated by kinase-type receptors, NIK, and development signaling.