1992 …2020

Research output per year

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Personal profile

Research interests

I have spent many years researching development and differentiation - how molecules and cells become organised, especially during root development in Arabidopsis seedlings. Topics have included the role of auxin in plant cell growth, and the subcellular networks that drive tip growth in root hair cells. For more on these topics please visit our wiki. We are now applying our knowledge of plant roots to discover how roots prevent soil erosion, bearing in mind that human activity has already eroded a quarter of the vegetated land on Earth. We are also discovering how patterns of molecules and cells might be controlled. As a member of BrisSynBio and Bristol Director of the SynBio CDT I am also involved in research aimed at making the engineering of plants and cell populations more reliable.

Lay summary of research interests

We know that life is the product of complicated physical and chemical interactions between molecules, but how do these produce growth, and how is this growth controlled so that it happens at precisely the right times and in the right places? We are working to answer these questions using plants and microbes because it is easier, technically and ethically, to do powerful, informative experiments with these organisms than with animals. We often identify new molecules that are important for growth in many organisms. We are also finding out how interactions between molecules control growth. Most recently we have receved funding from the Leverhulme Trust to investigate how plant roots prevent soil erosion. This is potentially very important as we have already eroded at least a quarter of the vegetated land on earth. Our results are potentially relevant to a wide range of applications from agriculture to human health and we are exploring potential agricultural applications.

iGEM

I co-founded the University of Bristol iGEM team with Mario Di Bernardo. Each spring a joint undergraduate and postgraduate Synthetic Biology workshop is held in preparation for iGEM. The team then works through the summer on a competition entry for the international Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) competition at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). So far we have been very successful, winning the Best Model prize in 2008 and 2009, gold medals in 2009 and 2010, and winning Best Food or Energy Project and third place overall in 2010. Projects have included engineering bacteria to work as a team Bristol iGEM 2008, Bristol iGEM 2009, and beads containing fluorescent bacteria that are designed to make agriculture less environmentally damaging Bristol iGEM 2010.

Network Evolution

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Structured keywords and research groupings

  • Cabot Institute Food Security Research
  • Cabot Institute Environmental Change Research
  • Cabot Institute Natural Hazards and Disasters Research
  • Cabot Institute Water Research

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Projects

CONFOCAL MICROSCOPY

Grierson, C. S.

1/01/091/01/10

Project: Research

CHINA PARTNERING AWARD

Grierson, C. S.

1/04/041/04/07

Project: Research

Research Output

Computer-aided whole-cell design: taking a holistic approach by integrating synthetic with systems biology

Marucci, L., Barberis, M., Karr, J., Ray, O., Race, P. R., de Souza Andrade, M., Grierson, C. S., Hoffmann, S. A., Landon, S., Rech, E., Rees-Garbutt, J. P., Seabrook, R., Shaw, W. & Woods, C. J., 21 Jul 2020, (Accepted/In press) In : Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

  • Designing Minimal Genomes Using Whole-Cell Models

    Rees-Garbutt, J., Chalkley, O., Landon, S., Purcell, O., Marucci, L. & Grierson, C., 11 Feb 2020, In : Nature Communications. 11, 12 p., 836 (2020).

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

    Open Access
    File
  • 51 Downloads (Pure)

    In vivo Feedback Control of an Antithetic Molecular-Titration Motif in Escherichia coli using Microfluidics

    Shannon, B. M., Zamora Chimal, C. G., Postiglione, L., Salzano, D., Grierson, C. S., Marucci, L., Savery, N. J. & Di Bernardo, M., 20 Feb 2020, (Submitted) In : ACS Synthetic Biology.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

    Activities

    • 1 Editorial activity

    Current Opinion in Plant Biology (Journal)

    Claire S Grierson (Editor)

    2010

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial activity

    Supervised Work

    Plastic Responses of Root System Architecture to Drought and Temperature Stress

    Author: Du Plessis, S. J., 12 May 2020

    Supervisor: Grierson, C. (Supervisor) & Bridle, J. (Supervisor)

    Student thesis: Master's ThesisMaster of Science (MSc)

    File

    Three Studies in Synthetic Biology

    Author: Cartlidge, L., 25 Jun 2019

    Supervisor: Grierson, C. (Supervisor) & Edwards, K. (Supervisor)

    Student thesis: Master's ThesisMaster of Science (MSc)

    File