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Dr. Sarah Liljegren

Assistant ProfessorDr. Sarah Liljegren
Department of Biology
The University of Mississippi

Office: 118 Shoemaker Hall
Research Lab: 123 Shoemaker Hall
Phone: (662) 915-1409

Research Interests:
The focus of the Liljegren lab is to investigate how membrane trafficking and cell signaling control key aspects of plant development. We have discovered that an Arabidopsis ARF GAP, NEVERSHED, is essential for organ abscission. Using nev mutant flowers as a sensitized genetic background, we have identified a set of receptor-like kinases--EVERSHED, SERK1, and CAST AWAY--that act as spatial and temporal inhibitors of organ separation. We are currently testing whether these kinases inhibit abscission by affecting the localization and activity of HAESA and HAESA-LIKE2, a pair of receptor-like kinases known to activate organ separation. We are also analyzing the broader roles of NEVERSHED and a related ARF GAP in regulating membrane traffic during root and meristem development.

BISC 336: Genetics
BISC 440: Cell and Molecular Biology
BISC 579: Plant Cell and Developmental Biology 

Postdoctoral Fellow, The Salk Institute for Biological Studies and UCSD
PhD, 1999, University of California at San Diego
BS, 1993, University of Washington

Selected Publications:

Liljegren SJ (2012) Organ abscission: exit strategies require signals and moving traffic. Current Opinion in Plant Biology  15: 670-676. Abstract

Bryan A, Racolta A, Tax F, and Liljegren S (2012) The social network: receptor kinases and cell fate determination. In Kemmerling B and Tax F (editors) Receptor-Like Kinases in Plants: From Signaling to Development. Springer Publishing, New York, NY. Abstract

Burr CA, Leslie ME, Orlowski SK, Chen I, Wright CE, Daniels MJ, and Liljegren SJ (2011) CAST AWAY, a membrane-associated receptor-like kinase, inhibits organ abscission in Arabidopsis. Plant Physiology 156: 1837-1850. Abstract

Lewis MW, Leslie ME, Fulcher EH, Darnielle L, Healy PN, Youn J-Y, and Liljegren SJ (2010) The SERK1 receptor-like kinase regulates organ separation in Arabidopsis flowers. Plant Journal 62: 817-828. Abstract

Leslie ME, Lewis MW, Youn J-Y, Daniels MJ, and Liljegren SJ (2010) The EVERSHED receptor-like kinase modulates floral organ shedding in Arabidopsis. Development 137: 467-476. Abstract

Liljegren SJ, Leslie ME, Darnielle L, Lewis MW, Taylor SM, Luo R, Geldner N, Chory J, Randazzo PA, Yanofsky MF, and Ecker JR (2009) Regulation of membrane trafficking and organ separation by the NEVERSHED ARF GAP protein. Development 136: 1909-18. Abstract

Sorefan K, Girin T, Liljegren SJ, Ljung K, Robles P, Galván-Ampudia CS, Offringa R, Friml J, Yanofsky MF, and Østergaard L (2009) A regulated auxin minimum is required for seed dispersal in Arabidopsis. Nature 459: 583-586. Abstract

Leslie ME, Lewis MW, and Liljegren SJ (2007) Organ Abscission. In Roberts J and Gonzalez-Carranza Z (editors) Plant Cell Separation and Adhesion. Blackwell Publishing, Oxford, United Kingdom. pp. 106-136.

Lewis MW, Leslie ME, and Liljegren SJ (2006) Plant separation: 50 ways to leave your mother. Current Opinion in Plant Biology 9: 59-65.

Pruzinská A, Tanner G, Aubry S, Anders I, Moser S, Müller T, Ongania KH, Kräutler B, Youn J-Y, Liljegren SJ, and Hörtensteiner S (2005) Chlorophyll breakdown in senescent Arabidopsis leaves. Characterization of chlorophyll catabolites and of chlorophyll catabolic enzymes involved in the degreening reaction. Plant Physiology 139: 52-63. Abstract

Hazen SP, Borevitz JO, Harmon FG, Pruneda-Paz JL, Schultz TF, Yanovsky MJ, Liljegren SJ, Ecker JR, Kay SA (2005) Rapid array mapping of circadian clock and developmental mutations in Arabidopsis. Plant Physiology 138: 990-7. Abstract

Liljegren SJ, Roeder AHK, Kempin SA, Gremski K, Østergaard L, Guimil S, Reyes DK, and Yanofsky MF (2004) Control of fruit patterning in Arabidopsis by INDEHISCENT. Cell 161: 843-853. Abstract

Pinyopich A, Ditta GS, Savidge B, Liljegren SJ, Baumann E, Wisman E, and Yanofsky MF (2003) Assessing the redundancy of MADS-box genes during carpel and ovule development. Nature 424: 85-88. Abstract

Burgeff C, Liljegren SJ, Tapia-Lopez R, Yanofsky MF, and Alvarez-Buylla ER (2002) MADS-box gene expression in lateral primordia, meristems and differentiated tissues of Arabidopsis thaliana roots. Planta 214: 365-72. Abstract

Ferrándiz C, Liljegren SJ, and Yanofsky MF (2000) Negative regulation of the SHATTERPROOF genes by FRUITFULL during Arabidopsis fruit development.  Science 289: 436-438. Abstract

Alvarez-Buylla ER, Pelaz S, Liljegren SJ, Gold SE, Burgeff C, Ditta GS, de Pouplana LR, Martínez-Castilla L, and Yanofsky MF (2000) An ancestral MADS-box gene duplication occurred prior to the divergence of plants and animals. PNAS 97: 5328-5333. Abstract

Liljegren SJ, Ditta GS, Eshed Y, Savidge B, Bowman JL, and Yanofsky MF  (2000) SHATTERPROOF MADS-box genes control seed dispersal in Arabidopsis. Nature 404: 766-770. Abstract