San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge
From left: Bob Fischer, Ping-Hung Hsieh, Samuel Lin, Juhyun Shin, Jennifer Frost, and Yeonhee Choi
Robert Fischer and Jennifer Frost discussing her Arabidopsis mutants
Arabidopsis ovules and seeds stained with GFP.  From left: MEDEA::GFP in the ovule,  MEDEA::GFP in early endosperm development of the seed, MEA::GFP in the endosperm of the maturing seed, DEMETER::GFP in the central cell of the ovule.  From Choi Y et al., 2002 (2002)
Samuel Lin
Scanning electron microscopy of ovule development, at stage 12-13 From Klucher KM et al., Plant Cell (1996)
Robert Fischer in teaching mode
Scanning electron microscopy of early ovule development From Klucher KM et al., Plant Cell (1996)
Pollen grains stained purple with Alexander stain, demonstrating their viability
A wild-type arabidopsis silique, showing a full cohort of developing seeds

Welcome to the Fischer Lab

The Fischer lab is interested in the epigenetic regulation of seed development in angiosperms, specifically Arabidopsis thaliana and Oryza sativa (rice).  Our main focus is investigation of the role of DNA methylation in the sexual reproduction of A. thaliana, specifically the process of DNA demethylation.  DNA demethylation is required for normal seed development, and is carried out in the male and female gametophytes by the DNA glycosylase DEMETER (DME;  the goddess of harvest).  In the female gametophyte, DME is expressed specifically in the central cell, and in the male gametophyte, it is expressed in the vegetative cell.  The lab uses a combination of molecular and genetic techniques to delineate the complex interactions between epigenetic regulators involved in seed development, and develops approaches to facilitate physical dissection of the intricate components of developing gametophytes.


Panel 1, A developing ovule in an A.thaliana ovary, stained with GUS to show DEMETER (DME) expression specifically in the central cell of the female gametophyte, from Choi et al., 2002.  Panel 2: The female gametophyte; CCN = central cell nucleus; ECN = egg cell nucleus; SP = sperm cell and PT = pollen tube.  Panels 3 and 4: The arabidopsis flower shows the growth of the pollen tube within the ovary.  Panel 5: The male gametophyte contains the vegetative nucleus and two sperm cells with in the vegetative cell.  DME is expressed in the vegetative nucleus, from Schoft et al., 2011.

Jin Hoe Huh rejoins the Fischer Lab!

Jin is now an Assistant Professor at SNU, and joins Bob's lab for his sabbatical

NIH Bridges to Baccalaureate 2015: Cloning and Biscuits

Victoria Partida
The Fischer lab were very fortunate to have Victoria Partida join them for the summer, courtesy of the NIH! She produced two excellent new constructs for Jenny's project on histone chaperones in the Arabidopsis seed.

Visitors from Caledonia

Hugh Nicholson
University of Dundee Student Hugh Nicholson won a Royal Society of Biology travel grant to visit the Fischer lab

Summer fun in the Fischer lab! University of Hawaii's Stephanie Matthews joins under the NSF REU program

Stephanie in the lab
Stephanie worked with Yvonne in the Fischer lab and successfully constructed several useful clones for Yvonne's work on RNA-directed DNA methylation in Arabidopsis reproduction

Pixies discovered in Koshland 231

Pixie with her Arabidopsis
Pixies discovered in Koshland 231. Thought to subsist on a diet of Arabidopsis siliques and soil, pixies can be unpredictable, and dangerous if startled. Do not approach.

Adam granted the 2014 Arnon Fellowship

Adam Adair
"Dr. Arnon is an outstanding example of what a scientist should be"

Seed Institute Meeting, Lake Arrowhead 2014

Pool at Arrowhead
Once again the Fischer lab return to beautiful Lake Arrowhead for the annual Seed Institute Meeting... except this year, they have to go without their Captain

New graduate student

Adam's favourite plant
Adam Adair joined the Fischer lab in May 2014. Adam will begin by working alongside Kyunghyuk on the isolation of cells in the female gametophyte

Stay classy, San Diego

Anchorman cast
Sam gets into grad school at UC San Diego, May 2014


Subscribe to Front page feed