William J. Lucas

William J. Lucas

Position Title
Distinguished Professor Emeritus

  • Plant Biology

Research Interests

Our lab is interested in the evolution and function of plasmodesmata, the intercellular organelle of the plant kingdom that mediates in both nutrient delivery and cell-to-cell signaling of information macromolecules, including transcription factors and RNA-protein complexes. We are also working on cellular and molecular aspects of virus infection involving transport of infectious RNA/DNA through plasmodesmata, during local infection, and long-distance movement of virus through the phloem for systemic infection within the plant. A major current focus of our lab is the isolation and characterization of the proteins that constitute the supramolecular structure of plasmodesmata.These studies are providing insights into the mechanisms involved in the selective trafficking of proteins/RNA that contribute to supracellular control over plant growth and development. A second emphasis in the lab involves studies on the role of the plant vascular system, and the phloem in particular, as an information superhighway for the delivery of proteins and ribonucleoprotein complexes involved in regulating developmental events in distantly located tissues and organs.

CBS Graduate Group Affiliations

Education and Degree(s)
  • 1971 B.S. in Physical and Inorganic Chemistry and Plant Biology, University of Adelaide
  • 1975 Ph.D. in Plant Biophysics, University of Adelaide
  • 1990 D.Sc., University of Adelaide