Faculty of Biological Sciences

Dr Yoselin Benitez-Alfonso

PhD
Lecturer in Plant Sciences
School of Biology

Contact:  Miall 9.18, +44(0) 113 34 32811, email address for  

You can read more about Dr Benitez-Alfonso's interests here:
www.plants.leeds.ac.uk/people/people.php

Research Interests

Symplastic communication in root development

In plants, cell-to-cell channels (called Plasmodesmata; PD) connect the cytoplasm of neighboring cells, forming the symplasm. These cytoplasmic bridges underpin the molecular communication required for coordinated development and growth, and for responses to the environment. PD are also the gateways for the vascular network that allows systemic transport of nutrient and metabolites around the plant.

Research in our lab aims to establish the importance of plasmodesmata transport in post-embryonic development and to reveal regulatory mechanisms controlling this form of intercellular communication.

Specifically, we study how symplastic communication influences root development in the model plants Arabidopsis thaliana and Medicago truncatula. Root post-embryonic development is characterized by the maintenance of the apical meristem and the continuous formation of new organs (such as lateral roots and nodules). Without a proper root system, plant uptake, fixation and transport of water, minerals and nutrients from the soil will be compromised. Therefore research aiming to optimize root architecture will directly impact on plant development, performance, productivity and adaptation to adverse environments. This is the ultimate goal of our research projects.

 

Faculty Research and Innovation



Studentship information

See also:

Modules managed

BIOL5152M - Topics in Plant Science
BLGY1005 - Tutorials (Joint Honours)
BLGY1303 - Tutorials for Biology and Genetics
BLGY2100 - Enhanced Study Skills for Biologists

Modules taught

BIOL5152M - Topics in Plant Science
BIOL5294M - MSc Bioscience Research Project Proposal
BIOL5372M - Advanced Biomolecular Technologies
BIOL5392M - Bioscience MSc Research Project
BLGY1128 - Living Planet
BLGY1303 - Tutorials for Biology and Genetics
BLGY1303/04 - Level 1 Tutorials
BLGY1303/04/1005 - Level 1 Tutorials
BLGY2100 - Enhanced Study Skills for Biologists
BLGY2100/2301 - Level 2 Tutorials
BLGY2313/5156M - Mediterranean Ecology Field Course
BLGY3291 - Comparative Genomics
BLGY3345 - Biology Integrated Research Projects

Postgraduates

Rocio Gaudioso Pedraza (Primary supervisor) 90% FTE
Philip Kirk (Primary supervisor) 50% FTE
Andrew Galloway (Co-supervisor) 20% FTE
Ryan Kaye (Co-supervisor) 10% FTE

Benitez-Alfonso Y, Faulkner C, Pendle A, Miyashima S, Helariutta Y, Maule A Symplastic Intercellular Connectivity Regulates Lateral Root Patterning Developmental Cell 26 136-147, 2013
DOI:10.1016/j.devcel.2013.06.010
View abstract

Faulkner C, Petutschnig E, Benitez-Alfonso Y, Beck M, Robatzek S, Lipka V, Maule AJ LYM2-dependent chitin perception limits molecular flux via plasmodesmata. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 110 9166-9170, 2013
DOI:10.1073/pnas.1203458110
View abstract

Fernandez-Calvino L, Faulkner C, Walshaw J, Saalbach G, Bayer E, Benitez-Alfonso Y, Maule A Arabidopsis plasmodesmal proteome. PLoS One 6 e18880-, 2011
DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0018880
View abstract

Benitez-Alfonso Y, Cilia M, San Roman A, Thomas C, Maule A, Hearn S, Jackson D Control of Arabidopsis meristem development by thioredoxin-dependent regulation of intercellular transport. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 106 3615-3620, 2009
DOI:10.1073/pnas.0808717106
View abstract

Pompa A, De Marchis F, Pallotta MT, Benitez Alfonso Y, Jones A, Schipper K, Moreau K,Žárský V, Di Sansebastiano GP, Bellucci M Unconventional Transport Routes of Soluble and Membrane Proteins and Their Role in Developmental Biology. International Journal of Molecular Sciences 18 -, 2017
DOI:10.3390/ijms18040703
View abstract

Baker RF, Leach KA, Boyer NR, Swyers MJ, Benitez-Alfonso Y, Skopelitis T, Luo A, Sylvester A, Jackson D, Braun DM Sucrose transporter ZmSut1 expression and localization uncover new insights into sucrose phloem loading Plant Physiology 172 1876-1898, 2016
DOI:10.1104/pp.16.00884
View abstract

Otero S, Helariutta Y, Benitez-Alfonso Y Symplastic communication in organ formation and tissue patterning Current Opinion in Plant Biology 29 21-28, 2016
DOI:10.1016/j.pbi.2015.10.007
View abstract

Grison MS, Brocard L, Fouillen L, Nicolas W, Wewer V, Dörmann P, Nacir H, Benitez-Alfonso Y, Claverol S, Germain V, Boutté Y, Mongrand S, Bayer EM Specific membrane lipid composition is important for plasmodesmata function in Arabidopsis. Plant Cell 27 1228-1250, 2015
DOI:10.1105/tpc.114.135731
View abstract

Pendle A, Benitez-Alfonso Y Immunofluorescence Detection of Callose Deposition Around Plasmodesmata sites Methods in Molecular Biology 1217 95-104, 2015
DOI:10.1007/978-1-4939-1523-1_6
View abstract

Knox JP, Benitez-Alfonso Y Roles and regulation of plant cell walls surrounding plasmodesmata Current Opinion in Plant Biology 22 93-100, 2014
DOI:10.1016/j.pbi.2014.09.009
View abstract

Benitez-Alfonso Y Symplastic intercellular transport from a developmental perspective. J Exp Bot 65 1857-1863, 2014
DOI:10.1093/jxb/eru067
View abstract

Gaudioso-Pedraza R, Benitez-Alfonso Y A phylogenetic approach to study the origin and evolution of plasmodesmata-localized glycosyl hydrolases family 17. Frontiers in Plant Science 5 212-212, 2014
DOI:10.3389/fpls.2014.00212
View abstract

J Maule A, Gaudioso-Pedraza R, Benitez-Alfonso Y Callose deposition and symplastic connectivity are regulated prior to lateral root emergence. Communicative and Integrative Biology 6 -, 2013
DOI:10.4161/cib.26531
View abstract

Maule A, Faulkner C, Benitez-Alfonso Y Plasmodesmata "in Communicado". Front Plant Sci 3 30-, 2012
DOI:10.3389/fpls.2012.00030
View abstract

Maule AJ, Benitez-Alfonso Y, Faulkner C Plasmodesmata - membrane tunnels with attitude. Curr Opin Plant Biol 14 683-690, 2011
DOI:10.1016/j.pbi.2011.07.007
View abstract

Benitez-Alfonso Y, Jackson D, Maule A Redox regulation of intercellular transport. Protoplasma 248 131-140, 2011
DOI:10.1007/s00709-010-0243-4
View abstract

Benitez-Alfonso Y, Faulkner C, Ritzenthaler C, Maule AJ Plasmodesmata: gateways to local and systemic virus infection. Mol Plant Microbe Interact 23 1403-1412, 2010
DOI:10.1094/MPMI-05-10-0116
View abstract

Benitez-Alfonso Y, Jackson D Redox homeostasis regulates plasmodesmal communication in Arabidopsis meristems. Plant Signal Behav 4 655-659, 2009
DOI:10.1073/pnas.0808717106
View abstract

Benitez Y, Botella MA, Trapero A, Alsalimiya M, Caballero JL, Dorado G, Muñoz-Blanco J Molecular analysis of the interaction between Olea europaea and the biotrophic fungus Spilocaea oleagina. Mol Plant Pathol 6 425-438, 2005
DOI:10.1111/j.1364-3703.2005.00290.x
View abstract

Benitez Y, Botella MA, Trapero A, Alsalimiya M, Caballero JL, Dorado G, Munoz-Blanco J Molecular analysis of the interaction between Olea europaea and the biotrophic fungus Spilocaea oleagina MOLECULAR PLANT PATHOLOGY 6 425-438, 2005
DOI:10.1111/1.1364-3703.2005.00290.X

Amsbury S, Kirk P, Benitez-Alfonso Y Emerging models on the regulation of intercellular transport by plasmodesmata-associated callose Journal Of Experimental Botany -,
DOI:10.1093/jxb/erx337
View abstract