Horticultural Sciences Department

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Dr. Anna-Lisa Paul

Office:2111 Fifield Hall

Research Professor

Areas of Research

My research interests focus on the regulation of plant gene expression in response to abiotic stress and extreme environments, with particular interest in chromatin structure, genome organization and epigenetic change. Venues associated with spaceflight provide an opportunity to explore plant genomic responses to an environment that is outside the evolutionary experience of terrestrial organisms.  This unique platform presents a background by which adaptive metabolisms can be observed as they are crafted to cope with a stress de novo; providing a window into the origins of adaptive processes

Lab website: http://ufspaceplants.org/

Educational Background

  • B.A.    University of South Florida, Tampa FL     1980    Botany
  • M.S.   University of South Florida, Tampa FL     1984    Plant Physiology / Physiological Ecology
  • Ph.D.  University of Florida, Gainesville FL        1989    Molecular Genetics / Epigenetics

Work and International Experiences

  • 2015 – present,      Research Professor
  • 2012 – present,      Graduate Faculty, Plant Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • 2009 – present,      Graduate Faculty, Horticultural Sciences
  • 2008 – 2015,          Research Associate Professor,  Horticultural Sciences, University of Florida
  • 2005-2008,             Associate Scientist, Horticultural Sciences, University of Florida
  • 1996-2004,             Assistant In, Horticultural Sciences, University of Florida
  • 1989-1996,             Postdoctoral Research Assoc: Univ. of Florida, and Northwestern University

Honors and misc. Academic Experience

  • President Elect, American Society for Gravitational and Space Research, 2016
  • Award for most compelling results on the International Space Station (awarded jointly to A-L Paul and R.J. Ferl), 2015
  • NASA GeneLab, Science Council, 2013 - present
  • NASA GeneLab KSC Science Element Lead –  IPA October 2013 - 2016
  • Governing Board, American Society for Gravitational and Space Biology 2005-2008, 2013-present
  • Board Member, Suborbital Applications Researchers Group (SARG), 2012 - present
  • Editor in Chief, Journal: Gravitational and Space Biology, 11-2010 – present
  • Graduate Coordinator, Program in Plant molecular and Cellular Biology, Jan 2013 - present
  • Lead IFAS Cohort Member, March 2012 through March 2013
  • Board Member, international Space Station Standing review Board (ISS SRB) 2012-2013
  • Science Writing Academy Participant and UF /HOS representative to National Association of Science Writers and the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing in November 2013

Current Graduate Students

  • Natasha Sng, PhD  (Chair)
  • Collin LeFrois, PhD  (Co-Chair)

Recent Publications

  • Ferl RJ and Paul A-L. (2016) The effect of spaceflight on the gravity-sensing auxin gradient of roots: GFP reporter gene microscopy on orbit. Nature Microgravity 2, 15023
  • Schultz E. R., Paul A.-L., and Ferl R. J. (2016) Root Growth Patterns and Morphometric Change Based on the Growth Media. Microgravity Sci Technol: 1-11.
  • Ferl RJ, Koh J, Denison F, Paul A-L (2015) Spaceflight Induces Specific Alterations in the Proteomes of Arabidopsis. Astrobiology 15: 32-56
  • Paul A-L and Ferl RJ (2015) Spaceflight exploration in plant gravitational biology. Methods in Molecular Biology 1309:285-305
  • Paul A-L, Zupanska AK, Schultz ER, Ferl RJ (2013) Organ-specific remodeling of the Arabidopsis transcriptome in response to spaceflight. BMC Plant Biology. 13:112 http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2229/13/112
  • Zupanska AK, Ferl RJ, Denison FC, Paul A‐L. (2013) Spaceflight engages heat shock protein and other molecular chaperone genes in Arabidopsis tissue culture cells American Journal of Botany. 100(1):235-248.
  • Paul A-L, Wheeler R, Levine H, Ferl RJ. (2013) Fundamental plant biology enabled by the space shuttle American Journal of Botany. 100(1):226-234.
  • Abboud T, Berinstain A, Bamsey M, Ferl RJ, Paul A-L, Graham T, Dixon MA, Leonardos D, Stasiak M, and Noumeir R. (2013) Multispectral Plant Health Imaging System for Space Biology and Hypobaric Plant Growth Studies. Insciences Journal 03:24-44.
  • Abboud T, Bamsey M, Paul A-L, Graham T, Braham S, Noumeir R, Berinstain A, and Ferl R. (2013) Deployment of a fully-automated green fluorescent protein imaging system in a high arctic autonomous greenhouse. Sensors. 13:3530-3548.
  • Schultz ER, Kelley KL, Paul A-L, and Ferl RJ. (2013) A Method for Preparing Spaceflight RNAlater-Fixed Arabidopsis thaliana (Brassicaceae) Tissue for Scanning Electron Microscopy. Applications in Plant Sciences. 1(8):130003. http://dx.doi.org/10.3732/apps.1300034 
  • Paul A‐L, Amalfitano CE, Ferl RJ. (2012) Plant growth strategies are remodeled by spaceflight. BMC Plant Biology. 12:232 http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2229/12/232
  • Paul A-L, Denison FC, Schultz ER, Zupanska AK, Ferl RJ (2012) 14-3-3 phosphoprotein interaction networks - does isoform diversity present functional interaction specification? Frontiers in Plant Science 3: 190
  • Schultz E, Zupanska A, Manning-Roach S, Camacho J, Levine H, Paul A-L and Ferl RJ (2012) Testing the Bio-compatibility of Aluminum PDFU BRIC Hardware. Gravitational and Space Biology 26(2): 48-63.
  • Paul A-L, Zupanska A, Ostrow DT, Zhang Y, Sun Y, Li J-L, Shanker S, Farmerie WG, Amalfitano CE, Ferl RJ. Spaceflight transcriptomes: unique responses to a novel environment (2012) Astrobiology 12(1): 40-56
  • Mayfield JD, Paul A-L, Ferl RJ (2012) The 14-3-3 proteins The 14-3-3 proteins of Arabidopsis regulate root growth and chloroplast development as components of the photosensory system.  J. Experimental Botany (doi: 10.1093/jxb/ers022)
  • Denison F., A-L. Paul, A.K. Zupanska, R.J. Ferl, (2011) 14-3-3 Proteins in Plant Physiology Seminars in Cell and Developmental Biology 22(7): 720-727
  • Paul A-L and Ferl RJ (2011) Using green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter genes in RNAlater™ fixed tissue  Gravitational and Space Biology 25(1): 40-43
  • Paul A-L, Manak MS, Mayfield JD, Reyes MF, Gurley WB, and Ferl RJ. (2011) Parabolic flight induces changes in gene expression patterns in Arabidopsis thaliana. Astrobiology  2011 Oct;11(8):743-58
  • Ferl RJ,  Zupanska A, Spinale  A, Reed  D,  Manning-Roach S, Guerra  G, Cox D, Paul A-L (2011) Performance of KSC Fixation Tubes with RNALater for orbital experiments: a case study in ISS operations for molecular biology. Advances in Space Research 48: 199-206
  • Gokirmak T, Paul A-L, Ferl RJ (2010) Plant phosphopeptide-binding proteins as signaling mediators. Curr Opin Plant Biol 13: 527-532
  • Visscher AM, A-L Paul, M Kirst, CL. Guy, AC. Schuerger, and RJ. Ferl (2010) Responses of wildtype arabidopsis and ion transporter mutants to high levels of magnesium sulfate; consequences for (extra)terrestrial plant growth. PLoS One 5(8): e12348
  • Ferl RJ, Paul A-L (2010) Lunar Plant Biology – A Review the Apollo Era. Astrobiology 10: 261-74.

Educational and Public Outreach

  • CASIS Science Academy, Kennedy Space Center, 2016Science Friday: Plants in Space! https://youtu.be/yzKM_NiMLSA  2015
  • Science Friday: Plants in Space! https://youtu.be/yzKM_NiMLSA  2015
  • Space Station Live: Cultivating Plant Growth in Space, https://youtu.be/9MfWARdoF-o
  • They Don't Call It The Vomit Comet For Nothing, https://youtu.be/purGp-1juCE
  • Elementary Education Science projects 2001, 2002, 2003, 2006
  • PBS / NASA Science Files – The Case of the Prize-winning Plants, http://scifiles.larc.nasa.gov/treehouse.html
  • The UF Genetics Educational Outreach – Scientific Thinking & Educational Partnership (STEP) (http://www.ufgenetics.com/VideoFeatures_Listing.aspx?id=20)
  • Institute for Learning in Retirement - “Women in Science” series on October 15, 2010: “Exploring a Career in Science - From Genetics to Spaceflight”.
  • Institute for Learning in Retirement. A community retirement program that organizes seminar series. Presented a seminar and interactive discussion session in the “Women in Science” series on October 15, 2010: “Exploring a Career in Science - From Genetics to Spaceflight”.
  • Science Café for the Florida Museum of Natural History
  • Gainesville Gator Exchange Rotary.  Luncheon presentation “Tools of exploration in space biology”. 9/18/2013
  • Florida Museum of Natural History.  Community open house presentation: Space biology exhibit at "Tastes, Tunes, and Treasures" 9/27/2013
  • Presentation for UF/FAAE Tech Workshop / Agricultural Education and Communication
  • Space Agriculture in the Classroom - Growing Space magazine article (volume 3, p7) and outreach kits for students (http://www.spaceag.org/gsenglish3.htm).
  • Scientific Thinking & Educational Partnership (STEP) program (series of science videos for lesson plans related to the concept of researching and growing plants in spaceflight and novel planetary environments. http://www.ufgenetics.com/VideoFeatures_Listing.aspx?id=20)  and on YouTube (e.g. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=purGp-1juCE)
  • The National High Magnetic field Laboratory’s Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Summer Internship Program
  • Space Life Sciences Training Program (SLSTP) Principle Investigator, 2000-2004
  • MANRRS - Exploring the Galaxy with Plants: “It’s A Green Thing in Space.” (note: their title)