Mechanisms of Genotype by Environment Interaction

Understanding how and why individuals and species respond differently to environmental cues is paramount for predicting how natural and agricultural systems will be impacted by climate change.

When variation in response can be attributed to genetic differences among individuals within a species, it is called genotype by environment interaction, or GxE. We have shown that GxE is pervasive in plant-environment interactions and is caused by several different genetic architectures (Des Marais et al. AREES 2013). The Des Marais Lab integrates detailed ecophysiological measurements with genomic data to draw functional connections between the molecular and whole-plant scale (e.g. Des Marais et al 2012 Plant Cell, 2014 PNAS).