• Title Research Assistant Professor
  • Education PhD, Stanford University, 2014
  • Web Address http://grahamdowphd.weebly.com/
  • Phone (617) 353-6987
  • Area of Interest plant ecology and climate change, stomatal development and function, signaling mechanisms
  • CV

Current Research

My lab uses stomata as a multidisciplinary tool to understand the dynamic relationship between plants, local environments, and climate. Stomata are microscopic pores on the leaf surface that facilitate the uptake of atmospheric carbon dioxide for photosynthesis, but as a corollary, stomata also release water vapor from the plant interior. Thus, stomata are important regulators of plant productivity; ecosystem energy cycles in forests, grasslands, and agricultural systems; and global changes in carbon dioxide concentration that can drive climate change.

We focus on these topics through a variety of approaches, including the following: (i) molecular biology, genetics, and genomic methods to dissect how developmental pathways determine the quantity and position of stomata on the leaf surface; (ii) measuring the outcome of changes in stomatal development on leaf anatomy, plant physiology, growth, and environmental responses; and (iii) field studies of different plant species and habitats that test hypothesis we have generated in the lab and greenhouse.

Our research is predicated on deriving fundamental mechanisms that can be applied broadly to understand how plants perceive and respond to environmental cues, on both instantaneous and longer-term time scales. Interested students and postdocs should contact me directly to discuss current projects and future potential; I am actively seeking new lab members at this time.

Selected Publications

  • Dow GJ, Bergmann DC (2014) Patterning and processes: how stomatal development defines physiological potential. Current Opinion in Plant Biology. 21: 67-74.
  • Dow GJ, Bergmann DC, Berry JA (2014) An integrated model of stomatal development and leaf physiology. New Phytologist. 201: 1218-1226.
  • Dow GJ, Berry JA, Bergmann DC (2014) The physiological importance of developmental mechanisms that enforce proper stomatal spacing in Arabidopsis thaliana. New Phytologist. 201: 1205-1217.
  • Special commentary on above New Phytologist articles: Franks PJ and Casson S (2014) Connecting stomatal development and physiology. New Phytologist. 201: 1079-1082.

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