Plant Biology


Salk Institute for Biological Studies - Plant Biology - Videos


2024 Franklin Institute Awards Ceremony Honoring Joanne Chory

In 2024, The Franklin Institute honored Joanne Chory with the Benjamin Franklin Medal for applying genetics to the understanding of how plants sense and respond to light, and for inspiring new strategies for utilizing plants to combat climate change. For more information:

From Then to When – Wolfgang Busch

Wolfgang Busch is a professor in the Plant Molecular and Cellular Biology Laboratory and the Integrative Biology Laboratory, executive director of the Harnessing Plants Initiative, and Hess Chair in Plant Science. Busch is a plant biologist who studies the genes and molecular mechanisms that determine how a plant’s genetic information interacts with the environment and is translated by molecular, cellular, and physiological networks to shape plant root growth. His research could help grow more resilient food sources—an increasingly urgent problem in the face of the planet’s shifting climate and increasing population—and help develop root systems that can be utilized on a large scale to store carbon in the soil that was captured by above-ground plant parts from atmospheric carbon dioxide.

Click to read video transcript»

The best offense is a great defense for some carnivorous plants

LA JOLLA–Insect-eating plants have fascinated biologists for more than a century, but how plants evolved the ability to capture and consume live prey has largely remained a mystery. Now, Salk scientists, along with collaborators from Washington University in St. Louis, have investigated the molecular basis of plant carnivory and found evidence that it evolved from mechanisms plants use to defend themselves. Learn more »

Gene identified that will help develop plants to fight climate change

LA JOLLA—Hidden underground networks of plant roots snake through the earth foraging for nutrients and water, similar to a worm searching for food. Yet, the genetic and molecular mechanisms that govern which parts of the soil roots explore remain largely unknown. Now, Salk Institute researchers have discovered a gene that determines whether roots grow deep or shallow in the soil. Read more »

How supercharged plants could slow climate change

The Salk Institute’s Harnessing Plants Initiative (HPI) is an innovative, scalable and bold approach to fight climate change by optimizing a plant’s natural ability to capture and store carbon and adapt to diverse climate conditions. We believe that our approach can help draw down and store more carbon and that we can—combined with other global efforts—mitigate the disastrous effects of climate change while providing more food, fuel and fiber for a growing population. Learn more »