Projects & Grants

Internal Grant Competition DGC
START-UP grant

The dark side of plastid biology: evolution and function of leucoplasts in algae
Project Id17-21409S
Main solverprof. Mgr. Marek Eliáš, Ph.D.
Period1/2017 - 12/2019
ProviderStandardní projekt GA ČR
AnotationA number of algal and plant groups independently lost photosynthesis while retaining relict plastids, i.e. leucoplasts. Apart the extensively studied leucoplasts of the parasitic apicomplexans, little is known about leucoplasts of protist (algal) groups. Data on leucoplasts in most lineages are fragmentary, often limited to cytological evidence of their existence. The proposed project aims at substantially advancing our knowledge of the leucoplast biology. We will obtain and analyze sequences of transcriptomes and plastid (and possibly nuclear) genomes of selected secondarily non-photosynthetic algae, including a newly discovered green algal lineage. We will also analyze data from other species provided by a collaborating foreign laboratory or recently released as a result of large-scale transcriptomic projects. Selected bioinformatic predictions will be tested using experimental approaches. The outcome will be a basic reconstruction of metabolic and other functional pathways in leucoplasts of phylogenetically diverse species and defining general trends in the leucoplast evolution.