What we do:

Chromosome axis dynamics in meiotic recombination

As a part of an international group of plant scientists we study how chromosome reorganization in meiosis and chromosome dynamics affect recombination outcomes, i.e., how they contribute to meiotic crossovers (CO) being formed in specific chromosome location. There is evidence that chromosomal axis, a proteinaceous structure that organizes chromatin into distinct chromosomes, plays an important role in this process. The axis organizes chromosomes into linear arrays of chromatin loops conjoined at loop bases.  At the onset of zygotene, programmed remodeling of the axis leads to the formation of the synaptonemal complex (SC), which stabilizes homologous chromosomes in close apposition in pachytene.

We are examining how the establishment of chromosome axis affects recombination, particularly in the context of the extreme bias of CO localization observed in maize.  To do this, we are undertaking a comprehensive study using live imaging, super-resolution microscopy, and proteomics. 

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