Dr. Emery is one of the world’s leading experts in the study of plant hormones. In particular, he works on a family of hormones, the cytokinins, which are notoriously difficult to analyze and which are potent regulators of plant development even when present at extremely low concentrations. Prior to coming to Trent in 2000, he completed post-doctoral research in Australia working on hormonal control of fruit set and seed development in chickpea and lupin and in France examining nitrogen and carbon metabolism in field peas. In his work with legumes he is studying how the plants biochemically pull themselves together as a means of determining how to create bigger, more stable yields. The end users of research findings would be breeders of plants who he could give direction for making better varieties of each plant.
July, 2018 - Breaking news! - Our PhD student, Mark Seegobin discovered presence of a range of "plant" hormones cytokinins in mammalian tissues! Check the interview with Mark and read his paper recently published in FASEB J.
June 2018 - "A virulent and resistant strain of fungus, called “Corn Smut Disease” is currently threatening our corn stalks." - Ibraheem Alimi, MSc. student, co-supervised by Prof. Neil Emery and Prof. Barry Saville, explains the importance of his research in the interview for Random Acts of Green.
April, 2017 - To branch or not to branch? Shade, ABA and auxin - Dr. Thien Nguyen and Prof. Neil Emery co-authored an insight paper that accompanies the groundbreaking research on ABA as the earliest upstream inhibitor of apical dominance, recently published in Journal of Experimental Botany.
December, 2016 - Research at Trent in Dr. Neil Emery’s lab highlighted in exhibition titled “Pulses: The Ideal Partner” on loan from the Canada Agriculture and Food Museum in partnership with Pulse Canada (Trent University News & Events)
November, 2016 - You can do cancer research and still work with plant hormones! - watch Mark on ChexTV
A New Bio-fertilizer for Farmers
May, 2016 - "Researchers at Trent University have discovered beneficial plant bacteria that could be used to produce more field crops like soybeans without having to farm additional land." (AgInnovation Ontario)
May, 2016 - "Neil Emery is after the freaks. The high-performing bacteria kind, that is. The Trent University professor is developing a new bio-fertilizer for farmers to increase yields and use less irrigation and fertilizer." (Toronto Star)
February, 2016 - “By testing and using carefully selected strains of bacteria, we’ve found a natural soybean growth enhancer that, with targeted application, can produce plant growth hormones that act as a nutrient vacuum, stimulating transport of metabolite building blocks to specific areas of a plant,” says Dr. Anna Kisiala, member of the research team. (Ontario Grain Farmer)
Canis familiaris tissues are characterized by different profiles of cytokinins typical of the tRNA degradation pathway. The FASEB Journal DOI: 10.1096/fj.201800347.
Phytohormone Profiling reveals fungal Signatures and strong Manipulation of Infection Cycle in the Gymnosporangium juniper-virginianae Dual-Host Plant System (Botany, 2017, https://doi.org/10.1139/cjb-2017-0178)
DELLA1-gibberellin signaling regulates cytokinin-dependent symbiotic nodulation (Plant Physiology, pp. 00919.2017)
Analysis of brassinosteroids in soybean seeds and leaves by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (Open Plant Sci J, 2017, DOI: 10.2174/1874294701710010100).
Yield associated traits correlate with cytokinin profiles in developing pods and seeds of field-grown soybean
cultivars (Field Crops Res 214: 175-184).
Dynamics and origin of cytokinins involved in plant manipulation by a leaf-mining insect (Insect Sci, 2017 https://doi.org/10.1111/1744-7917.12500)
Fungal derived cytokinins are necessary for normal Ustilago maydis infection of corn (Plant Pathology 66: 726–742)
Nod factor supply under water stress conditions modulates cytokinin biosynthesis and enhances nodule formation and N nutrition in soybean (Plant Signaling & Behavior 11(9): e1212799)
A laser dissection-RNAseq analysis highlights the activation of cytokinin pathways by Nod factors in the Medicago truncatula root epidermis (Plant Physiology, 171(3): 2256-2276)
Soybean seed development: fatty acid and phytohormone metabolism and their interactions (Current Genomics, 17(3): 241-260)
Cytokinin production by the rice blast fungus is a pivotal requirement for full virulence (PLoS Pathogens, 12(2): 1-25)
Emery Lab at PBWorks (for lab members only)