Invited Speakers
Karl Niklas

Cornell University, USA

Size-dependent variation in plant structure and function

Plant growth results in often dramatic changes in mechanical and physiological stresses that must be accommodated. How plants have adaptively accommodated these stresses, in the context of static and dynamic loads, hydraulics, and light interception will be discussed. Theory and empirical observations indicate the number of adaptive “solutions” to dealing with the requirements of growth in size increases with the number of functional obligations a plant must perform.

Gwyneth Ingram

Laboratoire Reproduction et Développement des Plantes, Lyon, France

Functional analysis of the DEK1 protein links the perception of mechanical cues to epidermal cell fate

Although mechanical cues have been proposed to be critically important for coordinating organ growth and morphogenesis, concrete links between plant mechanosensors and growth coordination have remained elusive. Recent results highlighting the role of the developmentally important DEK1 protein in mechanosensing create just such a link, and will be discussed.

Patrick Martone

University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada

Life in the weeds: biomechanics lessons from wave-swept seaweeds

A common feature of intertidal seaweeds is flexibility which reduces the drag on their thalli. The influence of cell wall chemistry and ultrastructure on the material properties of algal tissues and their capacity to resist mechanical stress in the moving aquatic environment will be discussed.

Siobhan Braybrook

UC Los Angeles, USA

Plant biomechanics at subcellular scale

The primary cell wall is responsible for the regulation of growth and form in plants. The nature of the pectin cell wall matrix will be examined in relation to its mechanical properties and its role in growth regulation. Methods for analyzing the elasticity and viscosity of the cell wall on a nanoscale will be presented.

Lab web site
L. Mahadevan

Harvard University, USA

Growth and decisions - from cells to organs

How do single cells and whole organs make decisions even as they grow in the presence of multiple sensory stimuli? Inspired by experiments, this question will be addressed quantitatively.

Delphine Jullien

Université Montpellier, France

Growth stresses and their consequences on tree mechanics

During tree growth, mechanical stresses accumulate in the trunk and branches due to the increasing weight and wood maturation. This results in particular stress profiles inside the tree axes. The measurement and modelling of these growth stress profiles will be presented, and their consequences on tree mechanics will be discussed.