Ohio University | College of Arts and Sciences | Department of Environmental and Plant Biology

Porter Hall 315 | Athens OH 45701 | Tel 740 593 1125 | Fax 740 593 1130

Evolutionary Developmental
Plant Biology
Ohio University

evodevo1        evodevo2

Circular patterns of xylem cells in Aradopsis thaliana (left) and 300 million year old equisetophyte Arthropitys (right), reflecting polar auxin regulaton of secondary vascular tissues


This research is directed toward discovering the ontogenetic and evolutionary origins of tissues, organs, and whole organisms.  The focus includes collaborations between studies of developmental pathways and their underlying genetic regulatory networks, and the fossil record.

Participating Faculty


Current and Past Projects:

Ballard Lab

  • Floral developmental evolution and phylogenetic restructuring of the Violaceae
  • Phylogenetic relationships and polyploid evolution in the pansies
  • Revisionary systematic studies of Neotropical violet genera
  • Tests of allopatric speciation models in the Viola canadensis complex 
  • Treatment of the Violaceae for Kubitzki's "Families and Genera of Vascular Plants"

Gleissberg Lab

  • Leaf morphological diversity in Papaveraceae
  • Role of FLORICAULA and class 1 KNOX genes in leaf development in Eschscholzia californica
  • Leaf development alterations in KNOX overexpressing Kohleria (Gesneriaceae)
  • Gene expression pattern changes associated with the evolution of unifacial leaves
  • Genetic regulation of changes in flower symmetry and inflorescence architecture in Fumariaceae

Rothwell Lab

  • Ontogeny of fossil ovules
  • Heterochronic origin of conifer leaves
  • Polar auxin regulation in the evolution of secondary vascular tissues
  • Parallel evolution of leaves in ferns and seed plants
  • Ontogenetic origin of the seed-plant eustele
  • Differential developmental patterns in the origin of lycophyte morphologies

Wyatt Lab

  • Characterization of auxin transport in the gps mutants of Arabidopsis
  • Effects of light on lignification and secondary cell wall production in Arabidopsis
  • Gene discovery during induction of reaction wood using Arabidopsis as a model


External Funding Sources

  • National Science Foundation
  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration
  • United States Department of Agriculture
  • Geological Society of America