Floral Development & Stem Cell Biology
In our lab, we study how plants develop and how novel plant forms arise.
Plant development begins in meristems, specialized tissues that contain stem cells. When stem cells divide, they produce cells that differentiate to make up the plant's organs (leaves, stems, roots, and flowers) as well as cells that maintain stem cell identity. This cycle is repeated when these daughter stem cells divide. This form of "stem cell maintenance" is found across all plants and is required to regulate growth throughout a plant’s life.
The sunflower family (Asteraceae) is the largest plant family with ~32,000 species. Its success has been attributed to the evolution of the capitulum, a compact inflorescence that appears and functions as a solitary flower but is comprised of many individual florets. The primary focus of our lab is on understanding how key changes in developmental programs (specifically those regulating stem cell maintenance) have contributed to the evolution of the Asteraceae capitulum.
CapituLab - News
We hosted our first collaborator meeting for our capitulum evolution and development project. Three labs: Mandel (Memphis), Burke (UGA) and the CapituLab spent two days chatting science and making plans to get things off the ground!
Dr. Vandana Gurung started in the CapituLab as a Postdoc (Welcome!) - July 2023
Brannan, Evie and Reid all went to Boise, Idaho for the Botany Meeting! They presented three posters and tore up the dance floor!
Undergraduate Researchers Madeline Gwin and Evie Moellering have started in the lab!
Welcome to Guillian Hernández Casanova, PhD student working in both the CapituLab and the Leisner Labs here at Auburn!
CapituLab celebrated its 1-year anniversary!
Daniel, Brannan and Reid all went to Anchorage. Alaska for the Botany Meeting!
Welcome to The CapituLab's first graduate student Brannan Cliver!
Undergraduate Researchers Riley Schuld and Erika Lesperance have started in the lab!
Daniel, Brannan and Reid all went to Southern Section - ASPB and presented our lab's first poster
The Jones Lab @ Auburn University has officially opened - August 2021
Excited to welcome Reid Selby to The CapituLab!
CapituLab Photo Album
CapituLab Members - circa Spring 2022
Daniel, Brannan and Reid at Botany 2022!
At Botany 2022 in Hawaiian shirts