Ben Miller is the Eastern ARC Fellow in Synthetic Biology at the University of East Anglia. Ben is a molecular biologist with an interest in calcium signalling pathways and synthetic biology in plants. His research is focussed on how plants use calcium as a second messenger to respond and adapt to the environment.
Eastern ARC Fellow in Synthetic Biology, University of East Anglia (2015 - Present)
Post-doctoral Scientist, John Innes Centre (2012 - 2015)
PhD, John Innes Centre (2012)
BSc, University of Durham (2008)
Standards for plant synthetic biology: a common syntax for exchange of DNA parts,
in New Phytologist
pp. 13-19Full Text UEA Repository
Activation of symbiosis signaling by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in legumes and rice,
in The Plant Cell
pp. 823-838Full Text UEA Repository
Calcium/Calmodulin-dependent protein kinase is negatively and positively regulated by calcium, providing a mechanism for decoding calcium responses during symbiosis signaling,
in The Plant Cell
pp. 5053-5066Full Text UEA Repository
Phosphorylation of S344 in the calmodulin-binding domain negatively affects CCaMK function during bacterial and fungal symbioses,
in The Plant Journal
pp. 287-96Full Text UEA Repository
A GRAS-type transcription factor with a specific function in mycorrhizal signaling,
in Current Biology
pp. 2236-2241Full Text UEA Repository
Key Research Interests
Plants use calcium as a second messenger in signal transduction pathways associated with many different biological processes, for example during drought, salt or cold stress, and during interactions with pathogens or symbionts. These different stimuli are able to induce different calcium signals in plant cells, but it is unclear how these different calcium signals bring about further specific responses.
Many calcium-binding proteins have been identified in plants and most of these proteins possess EF-hand motifs which have been shown to directly bind calcium ions. We are interested in understanding how these calcium-binding proteins decode different calcium signals into specific signalling responses.
If you are interested in a postdoctoral position in our laboratory, please e-mail me directly to discuss possibilities. We are very interested in potential postdocs with a strong background in plant biology, synthetic biology or biochemistry. Applicants are encouraged to look for funding sources, including Wellcome Trust Postdoctoral Fellowships, Marie Curie Fellowships, Newton Fellowships and HFSP Fellowships.
Current lab members
Maria Contreras Delgado (Eastern ARC funded PhD student)
Connor Tansley (BBSRC-DTP funded PhD student)