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Professor Miriam Gifford

Professor & Head of School

email: M.L.Gifford@warwick.ac.uk 

phone: 024 765 75268

Office: C111

Twitter: @giffordlab

Gifford webpage


Research Clusters

Plant & Agricultural Sciences

Environment & Ecology

Quantitative, Systems & Engineering Biology


Warwick Centres and GRPs

Warwick Integrative Synthetic Biology Centre


Vacancies and Opportunities

Opportunities in Gifford lab


Research Interests

We are interested in how plants interact with the environment. The mechanisms that facilitate this interaction are particularly important for plants since they are sessile yet still cope with environmental extremes.

When plant roots and microbes work together in symbiosis the ways they interact are even more important since more efficient interactions benefit both. By combining study of the root cell types that house microbes, the soil in which the interaction exists, and the genes and molecules regulating it, we aim to improve plant yield and sustainability in tune with the environment.

From root-soil-rhizosphere interactions, to circadian-shaping of nodulation, our work investigates a number of plant-nitrogen interactions. Please see my Gifford lab webpage where you can hear more details from the staff and students in the group.

Research: Technical Summary

Miriam Gifford has an international reputation for studying networks involved in plant responses to the environment, with a particular focus on modelling cell type specific gene networks enabling symbiosis with rhizobia (BB/P002145/1) and the impact of the circadian clock on nodulation (BB/T015357/1) and on the rhizosphere.

The lab’s collaborations with mathematical and computational scientists have resulted in advances in bioinformatic methods, such as network inference and meta-transcriptomics, including in tomato on the EU ROOTOPOWER project in which MG led one of the six work packages.

At the evolutionary level, MG has investigated connections between nodulation and lateral root development (BB/H019502/1, BB/J001872/1). Work has also included using population level studies (GWAS) and discovery of genes that control specific root architecture traits under distinct nitrogen environments, including of the first nitrogen-regulated microRNA (US Patent# 60/918,443).

Publications

For a full list of publications, see WRAP

School of Life Sciences, University of Warwick, UK

Professor and Head of School: 2021-onwards

Reader: 2019-2021

Associate Prof: 2014-2019

Assistant Prof: 2009-2014

Centre for Genomics & Systems Biology, New York University, USA

Post-doctoral fellow in Coruzzi & Birnbaum labs, inc. EMBO long-term fellowship: 2004-09

University of Edinburgh, UK

PhD: Cell layer specification during Arabidopsis embryogenesis: 2004

BSc Hons Biological Sciences / Honours Plant Science: 2001