Sustainability database

People

Dr Caroline Bowsher

Senior Lecturer

Plants unlike animals have the ability to produce their own food via Photosynthesis. This process takes part in the green parts of a plant – manly in the leaves. Photosynthesis produces carbohydrates, such as starch, and other important food products such as amino acids, proteins and fats. The chemical reactions producing these compounds are catalysed by enzymes found in a part of the cell called the chloroplast.

The different enzymes involved in photosynthesis will contribute towards the overall efficiency of the process. This will affect the ability of a leaf to produce carbohydrates, fats and proteins. Understanding chloroplast metabolism will help us understand how photosynthesis is regulated and may lead to an increase in overall yield of the plant such studies may also provide ways to help plants cope with inhospitable conditions such as drought and salinity.

Division: 
Research
Sustainability enthusiast?: 
No
Interdisciplinary themes: 
Education
Environment

Connections

Course

Green Biotechnology

Green biotechnology; plant biotechnology; biofuels; ethical issues such as impact on the environment

Group

Environment, Ecology and Evolution

The Environment, Ecology and Evolution Group focuses on applied research that addresses 21st century environmental challenges. The food we eat, the water we drink and the fuel that powers our industries are all dwindling resources that we harvest from the world around us. As our populations expand and natural areas are converted to farmland and cities we lose the services that nature provided for free. Our expanding cities have become ecosystems in their own right with their own unique urban ecology.

Keywords: 
Food, Water, Environmental biology, Biology, ecosystem services, Climate change, Biodiversity

Group

The Centre for the Genetics of Ecosystem Services

The Centre brings together researchers from within the Faculty of Life Sciences with expertise in ecosystem service measurement and ecological community genetics. This fusion of expertise allows us to answer fundamental questions linking genetic variation and evolutionary processes to the functioning of biotic communities and the delivery of fundamental ecosystem services.

The Centre aims to work collaboratively with other academics, industries and government bodies to address both the fundamental science and the societal impact of ecosystem services.

Keywords: 
ecosystem services, Environment, Climate change, Environmental biology

Group

Plant Sciences

Plants form the basis of life on Earth...

They are essential to us as food and their domestication was a primary driving factor in the birth of civilisation. Now, with the rising world population and climate change increasing the frequency of crop failures, food supply is becoming a key issue throughout the world. At the same time, plants are playing a growing role in meeting our energy needs and have enormous potential as sources of novel compounds.

Keywords: 
Plants, Plant science, Biology, Climate change

Group

Cell Organisation and Dynamics

Our group brings together researchers investigating various aspects of cell organisation and dynamics. A major focus is to understand the mechanisms underlying the biosynthesis, targeting and trafficking of proteins within the cell. We also investigate membrane and cytoskeletal dynamics, intracellular ion homeostasis and the cellular processes responsible for plant growth and development. A major goal is to decipher how defects in these processes leads to disease.

Keywords: 
Biology

Group

Biophysics and Structural Biology

The Biophysics and Structural Biology research group brings together researchers interested in understanding biology at the molecular level, linking structure with function. Research in the group spans the kingdoms of life investigating the molecular basis of virus, plant, microbial, animal and human biology. It often uses an interdisciplinary approach combining the use of structural biology with advanced enzymological, spectroscopic or computational studies.

Keywords: 
Biology

Group

Environment and Ecology

The Faculty of Life Science's Environment and Ecology research theme (Directed by Prof Richard Preziosi) focuses on applied research that addresses 21st century environmental challenges.

The food we eat, the water we drink, and the fuel that powers our industries are all dwindling resources that we harvest from the world around us. As our populations expand and natural areas are converted to farmland and cities, we lose the services that nature provided for free.

Keywords: 
Environment, Ecology, Biology, Biodiversity