Plant Molecular and Developmental Biology

Home E Syllabus and Course of Studies E Plant Molecular and Developmental Biology

Theory: 3 hours/week | ECTS Units: 5

Content – Aim of the course

Plant molecular biology has provided a wealth of insight into the how plants grow, reproduce, develop, respond to their environment, and defend themselves. The course in intended to cover

  • The basics of plant gene structure and function, and the application of that knowledge to both basic and applied plant biology research
  • Current knowledge of plant molecular biology, the experimental basis for that knowledge and its application to elucidate the mechanisms underlying complex cellular and organismal processes
  • Current knowledge in the fields associated with plant structural and functional genomics
  • Mechanisms (endogenous and environmental factors) that determine plant growth and development

Analytical Description of the Course

  • Plant gene structure, Mt DNA, Plastid DNA
  • Genome organization in plants (cell cycle, ploidy, transposable elements, transcriptions factors, protein synthesis in plants, epigenetic mechanisms)
  • Molecular mechanisms of plant signal transduction (receptors, signal transduction pathways in cells, tissues, in whole plant and between plants: hormones, defence)
  • Functional genomics
  • Plant development characteristics (growth, differentiation, development)
  • Gametogenesis- cytoplasmic male sterility
  • Embryogenesis
  • Development of root, stem, leaves, flower
  • Co-ordination of development
  • Cell death


Exams will be on the material covered in lectures, as well as readings, assignments and in-class discussions. They will exist of a mix of question types: short answers, problem solving, short essays, and multiple-choice.
The final evaluation will be determined from the following components:

  1. Two midterm exams
  2. Final exam
  3. Miscellaneous lecture assignments.

Reading Suggestions

  • Biochemistry & Molecular Biology of Plants, Buchanan B.B., Gruissem W. & Jones R.L., Wiley J & Sons, Ltd., 2002
  • Μechanisms in Plant Development, Leyser O. & Day S., Blackwell Publishing, 2002.
  • Molecular Plant Biology, Gilmartin P.M & Bowler C (eds.) Oxford University Press,2002.

Teaching Material / E-class


Daniela Tsikou (Course Coordinator)