Office: SCIE 4467
Lab: SCIE 4407-8
B.Sc. - Western
Ph.D. - Western
Post Doctoral Associate - Cold Spring Harbor, NY
Research Investigator - University of California, Berkeley
One of the fundamental questions in plant biology concerns the nature of the signals that bring about the transition from vegetative to reproductive growth. My research is aimed at characterizing the developmental signals that cause plants to flower. The primary focus of this work is the maize indeterminate gene (id1). Maize plants that lack id1 function flower extremely late, or not at all, and they exhibit abnormal flower development. The ID1 protein contains zinc-finger motifs, suggesting that it regulates the expression of other genes. Expression analysis reveals that id1 mRNA is expressed only in leaf tissue, suggesting that ID1 acts by controlling the production of leaf-derived signals that mediate the transition to flowering. Molecular, genetic and biochemical approaches are being used to identify the targets of the id1 gene. We are also using cDNA microarrays to generate a molecular profile of the differences between leaves that transmit flowering signals from mutant leaves that are defective in this function.
Other projects in the lab center on using genomics technology to identify and characterize genes that control flowering time, as well as cell division genes that are important for growth and development in maize and other plants.
Mimi Tanimoto, Reynald Tremblay and Joseph Colasanti, 2008. Altered Gravitropic response, amyloplast sedimentation and circumnutation in the Arabidopsis shoot gravitropism 5 mutant are associated with reduced starch levels. Plant Molecular Biology 67, 57-59.
Joseph Colasanti and Michael Muszynski, 2008. Genetic Regulatory Mechanism of Floral Induction in Maize. in The Maize Handbook, Vol. 1: The Biology of Maize. Eds. Sarah Hake and Jeff Bennetzen, Springer-Verlag.
Viktoriya Coneva, Tong Zhu and Joseph Colasanti, 2007, Expression differences between normal and indeterminate1 maize suggest downstream targets of ID1, a floral transition regulator in maize. Journal of Experimental Botany 58, 3679-3693.
Ada YM Wong and Joseph Colasanti, 2007. Maize floral regulatory protein INDETERMINATE1 is localized to developing leaves and is not altered by light or the sink/source transition. Journal of Experimental Botany 58, 403-414.
J. Colasanti, R. Tremblay, AYM Wong, V. Coneva, A. Kozaki and B.K. Mable, 2006, The maize INDETERMINATE1 flowering time regulator defines a highly conserved zinc finger protein family in higher plants. BMC Genomics7, 158
Reynald Tremblay and Joseph Colasanti, 2006. Mechanisms of Floral Induction in Flowering and Its Manipulation. Vol. 20, p28-48. Ed. Charles Ainsworth, Oxford University Press.
Joseph Colasanti, 2005. Decoding the Floral Stimulus: What’s next? Flowering Newsletter40: p24-26.
Akiko Kozaki, Sarah Hake and Joseph Colasanti, 2004, The maize ID1 flowering time regulator is a zinc finger protein with novel DNA binding properties. Nucleic Acids Research 32, 1710-1720
Joseph Colasanti and Venkatesan Sundaresan, 2000. Florigen enters the Molecular Age: Long Distance Signals that cause Plants to Flower. Trends in Biochemical Sciences 25, 236-240.
Paula McSteen, Debbie Laudencia-Chingcuanco and Joseph Colasanti, 2000. A floret by any other name: control of meristem identity in maize. Trends in Plant Sciences 5, 61-66.
Joseph Colasanti, Zhuang Yuan and Venkatesan Sundaresan, 1998. The indeterminate Gene Encodes a Zinc-finger Protein and Regulates a Leaf-generated Signal Required for the Transition to Flowering in Maize. Cell 93, 593-603.
MBG*4110 Advanced Concepts in Genetics
BOT*3310 Plant Growth and Development
MCB*6340 Advanced Topics in Molecular Genetics (co-instructor)
MBG*2020 Introductory Molecular Biology
MBG*6060 Advanced Topics in Cell Biology and Genetics
Lab Members - The Colasanti Lab
Viktoriya Coneva (Ph.D.)
Maxsym Misyura (Ph.D.)
Chloë Lazakis (M.Sc.)
Scott Hilborn (M.Sc.)
Zacharie Leblanc (M.Sc.)
Carla Coelho (Exchange Student)
Post Doctoral Associate
Dr. Mimi Tanimoto
Tremblay, Reynald (M.Sc.)
Wong, Ada (M.Sc.)
At Guelph article