Scadenza: 02.11.2022 14:35

Pubblicato il: 01.09.2022 13:00

Silvia is a post-doctoral fellow at DiBio

Can you summarize in few words your research?

I am interested in plant development and evolution, especially in investigating the female reproductive structures that seed plants have evolved. I am currently studying the process of development and differentiation of the ovule of Ginkgo biloba, a gymnosperm species belonging to one of the most ancient lineages of seed plants. Ginkgo ovule development has fascinated me because it is a long process (it takes several months from ovule initiation to mature seed formation), and because pollination and fertilization occur in two separated and distant moments. We recently discovered that pollination plays a crucial role in activating the processes of seed coat development in Ginkgo ovules, long before fertilization takes place. The study of ovule-development genetic network regulatory genes is important to understand the morphological evolution of land plant reproductive structures.

What is the most rewarding and the most challenging part of your work?

The most rewarding (and also the most challenging) part of my job is being able to express my creativity in the investigation phase.

Tell us your story: what brings you to DiBio?

I got my master degree in Evolutionary Biology here in Padova in 2014, with a thesis on the chloroplast-localized MCU (cMCU) of Arabidopsis thaliana, under the supervision of Dr. Laura Cendron. One year later I obtained a PhD position in the Laboratory of Prof. Barbara Baldan and I worked on flower and fruit development in the water lily Nymphaea caerulea. A major goal of my PhD studies was to reveal the complex array of MADS-box genes – master regulatory genes in plant reproductive development – involved in all the different organs that compose this complex flower. The other goal was to explore the fruit development, principally investigating its intriguing opening mechanism. Now I am mostly involved into the investigation of Ginkgo biloba ovule development.

What would you tell your younger self?  

Try to be honest with yourself and do not neglect your needs.

What’s your favourite “toy” for research – and what can it do?

My favourite “toy” is the microscope, because it helps you observing things, not just “see” them.

What are your interests outside science?

I love playing with my nephews, taking care of nature, and dancing.



Ultimo aggiornamento: 11.08.2022 10:14