Plants & People

Meet our new Science Editors : Michela and Guillaume

Welcome to two editors who will expand Botany One's horizons.
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The Annals of Botany Company has asked Botany One to expand the range of stories it covers. You’ll still see stories about papers in Annals of Botany, AoB PLANTS and in silico Plants, but we hope you’ll see more stories from elsewhere. To help, we now have two new editors.

Michela Osnato

Michela is a Plant Molecular Biologist passionate about Science Communication and Education. As Science Editor of Botany One, she will explore new opportunities to highlight the importance of cutting-edge research in Plant Sciences and increase the visibility of Plant Scientists that make it possible.

Michela Osnato looking into the camera with a serious I'm here to talk about Science expression.
Michela Osnato.

Born and grown up in North of Italy (land of delicious risotto), she completed her academic studies at the University of Milan, with a graduation in Plant biotechnologies and a PhD in Plant Biology and Crop Productivity.

She has always been fascinated by the developmental plasticity of plants. For this reason, she decided to study the regulatory mechanisms underlying plant development – with a particular interest for the reproductive phase – and adaptive growth by using cereals as experimental model.

As Postdoctoral fellow at CRAG (Barcelona, Spain), she swapped to the model organism Arabidopsis thaliana to investigate plant response to abiotic stresses related to climate change (e.g., warmer ambient temperature, decreasing water availability and increasing soil salinity).

She is currently working as Research Associate at ICTA-UAB, a research centre of the Autonomous University of Barcelona devoted to the study of global change and sustainable development.

Beyond the bench, she has participated in different outreach initiatives to promote scientific culture and foster equal opportunities for women in STEM. Among others, she developed her own science communication project (Secret Life of Plant Biologist) by combining photography, audiovisuals and writing in different languages. The project aimed at giving a voice and a face to young researchers as well as disseminating scientific results through digital channels and a dedicated website.

She has also been collaborating with the American Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB), first as Plantae fellow and then as Assistant Features Editor of The Plant Cell, by preparing original content for the digital platform and the scientific journal.

Michela is intrigued by the coevolution of humans and plants throughout millennia, from the birth of agriculture that contributed to the evolution of human societies to the artificial selection of plants with favourable characteristics that improved food production. For example, if ancient farmers had not selected rice variants that better adapted to temperate regions, today we would not have been able to eat risotto in Italy or paella in Spain.

Michela will be working on science news about the past, the present and the future of the plant world (or green planet). Also, she would like to tell the stories of those people, from undergraduate students to emeritus professors, who play essential roles in the conservation of plant biodiversity (and ecosystems) as well as sustainable agriculture.

Guillaume Lobet

Guillaume (he/him) is a Belgian plant modeller, with a passion for Open Science, Science Communication and Education in general. As a Science Editor of Botany One he will focus on transmitting his passion for botany and plants in general to a large audience. 

Guillaume Lobet squinting with one eye at a seed held between his thumb and forefinger.
Guillaume Lobet

Guillaume’s passion for plants started during his bio-engineering studies at the UCLouvain in Belgium. There he started working on the quantification of water relations in the soil-root system, first for his master thesis, then for a doctorate. While such process might seem simple (anyone with a house plant knows it needs to be water frequently), it hides multiple layers of dynamics regulations, both in the plant and the soil

This incredible complexity calls for integrative research strategies such as combining innovative plant phenotyping pipelines with powerful data analysis and modelling tools. Guillaume’s belief is that combining computational tools with the latest biological knowledge will open new horizons for plant research. He spends most of his research time developing and using new computational tools, connecting them to existing ones and making them available for the community. He is currently an Assistant Professor between the Forschungszentrum Juelich and the UCLouvain since September 2016.

Guillaume is also passionate about Open Science, teaching and science communication in general. As such, he always tried to share his work as widely as possible for the scientific (and non-scientific) community. Do you want to try out computational plant models? Try out http://www.botalgorithme.be. Do you need a tool to analyse your plant images? Check out www.quantitative-plant.org. Do you want to learn more about biology (and speak French) ? Here are some videos for you https://www.youtube.com/Botanicum101

At Botany One, Guillaume will share his passion about plants and try to communicate to an audience as wide as possible. He will be working on how plants and botany are represented in our daily lives and have a strong impact on it.

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