Biotechnology - Research - Biological Sciences - University of Canterbury - New Zealand

Plant Physiology and Biotechnology Research

Plant physiology is the study of the physical and chemical processes that occur within plants. These processes are studied at many different scales of size and time.

A focus of the research at UC is on responses of plants to extremes of environment and responses to changes in climate.  Also of interest  is developmental plant physiology with particular focus on the roles of the plant hormones in growth and development.

Biotechnology is a multidisciplinary subject investigating the application of biological understanding to provide products that benefit society and support sustainable economic development.

At UC particular biotechnological strengths exist in our environmental programmes, using molecular tools to answer questions of ecological and evolutionary significance. Other strengths include medical biotechnologies and bionanotechnologies, each of which show synergies with programmes in the Department of Chemistry and the MacDiarmid Centre for Nanotechnology.

Examples of research include

  • Phytoremediation potential of herbs and NZ plants.
  • Somatic embryogenesis and artificial seed technology.
  • Ecophysiology of resource acquisition in natural and managed ecosystems.
  • The roles of the plant hormones on phase change, flowering, pigments, fruit development and senescence.
  • Plant-microbe interactions with a particular focus on the perturbation of plant hormones by the microbe and the mechanisms invoked by the plant to retain hormone homeostasis.

The College of Science is home to the Centre for Integrated Research on Biosafety, which focuses on bioafety and biosecurity, and the implications of modern biotechnologies for society.

Research Staff

Matthew Turnbull Prof Matthew Turnbull
Plant Physiological Ecology
David Leung Assoc Prof David Leung
Plant Biotechnology
Paula Jameson Prof Paula Jameson
Plant Biology
Jack Heinemann Prof Jack Heinemann
Gene Ecology

Research Centre

Recent Posters

Course Advice