Jianping Hu

Professor, Plant Biology
Professor, MSU-DOE Plant Research Laboratory
Director, Molecular Plant Sciences Program
Faculty, Genetics & Genome Sciences Program
Faculty, Cell & Molecular Biology Program
Professor, BioMolecular Science Gateway
Location: 306 Plant Biology Lab
Profile photo of  Jianping Hu
Photo of: Jianping Hu


### Titles
* Professor
* Director, Molecular Plant Sciences

Molecular Mechanisms of the Dynamics of Energy Organelles and their Role in Plant Interaction with the Environment
In eukaryotic cells, biochemical reactions are compartmentalized in specific subcellular organelles. Plant mitochondria, peroxisomes, and chloroplasts are essential organelles in development and coordinate in a number of metabolic pathways required for energy capture, conversion, and metabolism. The Hu laboratory is interested in understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying the dynamic behavior of these energy organelles and their role in plant interaction with the environment.

For adaptation, subcellular organelles can alter their abundance, morphology, and protein composition depending on the developmental and environmental conditions. One major research goal of the Hu lab is to elucidate molecular mechanisms by which peroxisomes and mitochondria proliferate/divide, move/distribute, and turnover to ultimately understand how organelle dynamics contribute to plant robustness and stress response. To this end, we have identified and characterized components of the machineries that govern the biogenesis, division and proliferation of peroxisomes and mitochondria, revealed transcriptional and post-translational regulatory mechanisms of these processes, and begun to  reveal mechanisms for the motility of these organelles along the cytoskeleton as well as the environmental control of the motility. We have also established a deep-learning framework to rapidly classify organelle morphology with the goal to facilitate large-scale screens for mutants in organelle dynamics.

Another research direction in the Hu lab is the regulation of photorespiration in dynamic environmental conditions and the role of photorespiration in plant defense against pathogens. The photorespiration pathway is coordinated by chloroplasts, peroxisomes, and mitochondria, salvaging the byproduct of Rubisco oxygenation, 2-phosphoglycolate, to 3-PGA to re-enter the Calvin-Benson cycle. We have revealed regulatory links between photorespiration and photosynthesis and identified additional factors/non-canonical pathways that modulate photorespiration under dynamic light conditions.

Our research has agricultural and economical relevance, as knowledge gained may provide molecular bases for developing strategies for rational engineering of crop plants to improve metabolism, bioenergy production, and defense against environmental stresses. Our research may also provide useful information to biomedical studies in curing human peroxisomal and mitochondrial diseases.

### Education
* Postdoctoral Researcher, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Salk Institute for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA
* Ph.D., University of Georgia, Athens, GA
* B.S., Peking University, Beijing, China

### Links
* [Hu lab news](https://prl.natsci.msu.edu/news-and-events/news/index.aspx?tag=Hu+lab)
* [PubMed](https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/?term=(Hu%2C%20Jianping%5BAuthor%5D)%20AND%20Plant%20Research%20Laboratory%5BAffiliation%5D)