Developmental cell biology of plants

One of our main topics of interest is the study of endodermis as an invariant feature of vascular plants. It fulfils a crucial barrier function separating the extracellular space of outer cell layers from the inner apoplastic space of the vascular bundles. The "Casparian strip" has been defined as an area where endodermal cells secrete hydrophobic material in a highly localised and coordinated fashion to act as a barrier. The Casparian strip is composed of a ligno-suberic polymer, which forms an extensive, supra-cellular network. We demonstrate that there is no lateral diffusion across the Casparian Strip Domain (CSD) between outer and inner plasma membrane domains and we have identified transporters that localise to one or the other membrane region, depending on their function in uptake or efflux of nutrients. In addition we identified a new class of proteins that mark and predict the formation of the CSD. We will investigate the mechanisms underlying the formation of the Casparian Strip sub-domain on cellular surface and the localisation of proteins to either its central or peripheral side.


Recent Publications

  • High-order mutants reveal an essential requirement for peroxidases but not laccases in Casparian strip lignification
    Rojas-Murcia, Nelson; Hematy, Kian; Lee, Yuree; Emonet, Aurelia; Ursache, Robertas; Fujita, Satoshi; De Bellis, Damien; Geldner, Niko
    Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences Of The United States Of America 10.1073/pnas.2012728117   Nov 2020
  • SCHENGEN receptor module drives localized ROS production and lignification in plant roots
    Fujita, Satoshi; De Bellis, Damien; Edel, Kai H.; Koester, Philipp; Andersen, Tonni Grube; Schmid-Siegert, Emanuel; Tendon, Valerie Denervaud; Pfister, Alexandre; Marhavy, Peter; Ursache, Robertas; Doblas, Veronica G; Barberon, Marie; Daraspe, Jean; Creff, Audrey; Ingram, Gwyneth; Kudla, Joerg; Geldner, Niko
    Embo Journal   DOI: 10.15252/embj.2019103894  MAR 2020
  • A two-way molecular dialogue between embryo and endosperm is required for seed development
    Doll, N. M.; Royek, S.; Fujita, S.; Okuda, S.; Chamot, S.; Stintzi, A; Widiez, T; Hothorn, M; Schaller, A; Geldner, N; Ingram, G
    Science  367(6476): 431-+ SI DOI: 10.1126/science.aaz4131 JAN 24 2020
  • Co-incidence of Damage and Microbial Patterns Controls Localized Immune Responses in Roots
    Zhou, Feng; Emonet, Aurelia; Tendon, Valerie Denervaud; Marhavy, Peter; Wu, Dousheng; Lahaye, Thomas; Geldner, Niko
    Cell  180(3): 440-+ DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2020.01.013 FEB 6 2020
  • Molecular mechanism for the recognition of sequence-divergent CIF peptides by the plant receptor kinases GSO1/SGN3 and GSO2
    Okuda, Satohiro; Fujita, Satoshi; Moretti, Andrea; Hohmann, Ulrich; Doblas, Veronica G.; Ma, Y; Pfister, A; Brandt, B; Geldner, N; Hothorn, M
    Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences Of The United States Of America, 10.1073/pnas.1911553117, FEB 4 2020
  • Root endodermal barrier system contributes to defence against plant-parasitic cyst and root-knot nematodes
    Holbein, J; Franke, RB; Marhavy, P; Fujita, S; Gorecka, M; Sobczak, M; Geldner, N; Schreiber, L; Grundler, FMW; Siddique, S
    PLANT JOURNAL, 10.1111/tpj.14459 
  • Single-cell damage elicits regional, nematode-restricting ethylene responses in roots
    Marhavy, P; Kurenda, A; Siddique, S; Tendon, VD; Zhou, F; Holbein, J; Hasan, MS; Grundler, FMW; Farmer, EE; Geldner, N
    EMBO JOURNAL, 38 (10):10.15252/embj.2018100972 MAY 15 2019
  • The Casparian strip-one ring to bring cell biology to lignification?
    Barbosa, ICR; Rojas-Murcia, N; Geldner, N
    CURRENT OPINION IN BIOTECHNOLOGY, 56 121-129; 10.1016/j.copbio.2018.10.004 APR 2019
  • Diffusible repression of cytokinin signalling produces endodermal symmetry and passage cells.
    Andersen TG, Naseer S, Ursache R, Wybouw B, Smet W, De Rybel B, Vermeer JEM, Geldner N.
    Nature. 2018 Mar 22;555(7697):529-533. doi: 10.1038/nature25976. Epub 2018 Mar 14. PMID:29539635
  • A protocol for combining fluorescent proteins with histological stains for diverse cell wall components.
    Ursache R, Andersen TG, MarhavĂ˝ P, Geldner N.
    Plant J. 2018 Jan;93(2):399-412. doi: 10.1111/tpj.13784. PMID:29171896
  • Surveillance of cell wall diffusion barrier integrity modulates water and solute transport in plants
    Wang, P; Calvo-Polanco, M; Reyt, G; Barberon, M; Champeyroux, C; Santoni, V; Maurel, C; Franke, RB; Ljung, K; Novak, O; Geldner, N; Boursiac, Y; Salt, DE
    SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, 9 10.1038/s41598-019-40588-5 MAR 12 2019
  • Root zone-specific localization of AMTs determines ammonium transport pathways and nitrogen allocation to shoots
    Duan, FY; Giehl, RFH; Geldner, N; Salta, DE; von Wiren, N
    PLOS BIOLOGY, 16 (10):10.1371/journal.pbio.2006024 OCT 2018
  • Minimum requirements for changing and maintaining endodermis cell identity in the Arabidopsis root
    Drapek, C; Sparks, EE; Marhavy, P; Taylor, I; Andersen, TG; Hennacy, JH; Geldner, N; Benfey, PN
    NATURE PLANTS, 4 (8):586-595; 10.1038/s41477-018-0213-y AUG 2018
  • Correction: Diffusible repression of cytokinin signalling produces endodermal symmetry and passage cells
    Andersen, Tonni Grube; Naseer, Sadaf; Ursache, Robertas;  Wybouw, Brecht; Smet, Wouter; De Rybel, Bert; Vermeer, Joop EM; Geldner, Niko
    NATURE (2018) DOI: 10.1038/nature25976), NATURE 10.1038/s41586-018-0231-y
Geldner Niko

Prof. Dr. Niko Geldner
University of Lausanne
Department of Plant Molecular Biology
1015 Lausanne

Tel: +41 21 692 4192

Research topics

  • The root endodermis as a polar epithelium 
  • Receptor trafficking in plants 
  • Waves lines: Mapping the complexity of the plant membrane system



  • WAVE lines: a set of fluorescent markers for plant membrane compartments
  • The pNIGEL recombination vector series
  • Live cell imaging
  • Forward and reverse genetic screens
  • Proteomic approaches