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Plant Physiology

The Research Unit of Plant Physiology studies several functional features of plant development and response to stress: growth, organogenesis, senescence and physiological performances are analyzed under different dimensional scales, that span from molecular interactions to whole organisms. Also the experimental systems under investigation encompass a wide range of cases, by involving model species, plants grown for food or ornamental purposes, as well as wild plants from land and aquatic environments. The study of plant physiology is therefore addressed through multiple approaches, in order to integrate knowledge arising from studies at different degrees of complexity. Further research lines deal with nutraceutical substances of plant food, with the aim of evaluating the nutritional value (as well as the anti-nutritional constituents) of seeds, fruits and vegetables.

The Unit includes also researchers engaged in microbiological studies aimed at environmental remediation.

More in detail, the Plant Physiology Unit operates on the following research topics:

• Physiology of seeds
• Biosynthesis, metabolism and signal transduction of plant growth regulators
• Developmental processes and senescence of higher plants
• Physiology of abiotic stresses
• Nutraceutical constituents of plant foods
• Biotechnology for environmental remediation

The research work of the Plant Physiology Unit is carried out at the laboratories of the Botanical Garden of the University of Pisa.

The staff of the Research Unit is engaged in the teaching activities of the Department of Biology, within the following academic disciplines:

• Plant developmental biology
• Biotechnologies for environmental remediation
• Plant Biotechnologies
• Plant Ecophysiology
• Plant Physiology
• Molecular Plant Physiology and Transformation of Plants

Staff of the Plant Physiology Unit: (academic titles are equivalent to those of the United States universities, according to the list of the Italian National University Council, 2010)

Associate professors
Prof. Francesco Licausi

Research associates
D.ssa Debora Fontanini
Dr. Carlo Sorce
D.ssa Carmelina Spanò

Research fellows
Dr. Riccardo Di Mambro
D.ssa Beatrice Giuntoli

Technical assistants
D.ssa Stefania Bottega
D.ssa Antonella Capocchi
D.ssa Simona Di Gregorio
D.ssa Lara Lombardi


Via Luca Ghini, 13 I-56126 Pisa
Phone 050 2211310
Fax 050 2211308