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Health Sciences profile

Professor Richard Macknight

PositionProfessor
DepartmentDepartment of Biochemistry
QualificationsMSc PhD(Otago)
Research summaryMolecular genetics of plant development

Research

My research group is focused on understanding plant development, in particular on how flowering time is regulated and how seeds develop. We are currently using molecular-genetic approaches to:

  • Investigate the regulation of flowering in Arabidopsis and in the model legume, Medicago truncatula.
  • Identify and characterise imprinted genes.
  • Discover genes involved in Arabidopsis seed development.
  • Identification of genes for enhanced hybrid onion production.

Publications

Herridge, R., Samarth, Brownfield, L., & Macknight, R. (2021). Identification and characterization of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) vernalization genes. Frontiers in Plant Science, 12, 640324. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2021.640324

Samarth, Lee, R., Kelly, D., Turnbull, M. H., Macknight, R. C., Poole, A. M., & Jameson, P. E. (2021). Molecular control of the floral transition in the mast seeding plant Celmisia lyallii (Asteraceae). Molecular Ecology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1111/mec.15859

Khosa, J., Bellinazzo, F., Goldstein, R. K., Macknight, R., & Immink, R. G. H. (2021). PEBP proteins: The conductors of dual reproduction in plants with vegetative storage organs. Journal of Experimental Botany. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1093/jxb/erab064

Wu, R., Cooney, J., Tomes, S., Rebstock, R., Karunairetnam, S., Allan, A. C., Macknight, R. C., & Varkonyi-Gasic, E. (2021). RNAi-mediated repression of dormancy-related genes results in evergrowing apple trees. Tree Physiology, tpab007. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1093/treephys/tpab007

Herridge, R. P., Macknight, R. C., & Brownfield, L. R. (2020). Prospects for F1 hybrid production in ryegrass. New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Research, 63(3), 405-415. doi: 10.1080/00288233.2018.1559867

Weller, J. L., & Macknight, R. C. (2018). Functional genomics and flowering time in Medicago truncatula: An overview. In L. A. Cañas & J. P. Beltrán (Eds.), Functional genomics in Medicago truncatula: Methods and protocols: Methods in molecular biology (Vol. 1822). (pp. 261-271). New York, NY: Humana Press. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-8633-0_17

Chapter in Book - Research

Chisnall, M., & Macknight, R. (2017). Importance of Vitamin C in human health and disease. In M. A. Hossain, S. Munné-Bosch, D. J. Burritt, P. Diaz-Vivancos, M. Fujita & A. Lorence (Eds.), Ascorbic Acid in Plant Growth, Development and Stress Tolerance. (pp. 491-501). Cham, Switzerland: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-74057-7

Chapter in Book - Research

Day, R., & Macknight, R. (2014). Screening for imprinted genes using high-resolution melting analysis of PCR amplicons. In C. Spillane & P. C. McKeown (Eds.), Plant epigentics and epigenomics: Methods and protocols. (pp. 71-83). Humana Press. doi: 10.1007/978-1-62703-773-0_5

Chapter in Book - Research

Picard, K., Lee, R., Hellens, R., & Macknight, R. (2013). Transient gene expression in Medicago truncatula leaves via agroinfiltration. In R. J. Rose (Ed.), Legume genomics: Methods and protocols: Methods in molecular biology (Vol. 1069). (pp. 215-226). New York: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-1-62703-613-9_15

Chapter in Book - Research

Macknight, R. C., Herridge, R. P., & Day, R. C. (2012). Using transcriptomics to reveal gene networks of seed development in Arabidopsis. In G. K. Agrawal & R. Rakwal (Eds.), Seed development: OMICS technologies toward Improvement of seed quality and crop yield. (pp. 99-110). Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-94-007-4749-4_6

Chapter in Book - Research

Herridge, R., Samarth, Brownfield, L., & Macknight, R. (2021). Identification and characterization of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) vernalization genes. Frontiers in Plant Science, 12, 640324. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2021.640324

Journal - Research Article

Khosa, J., Bellinazzo, F., Goldstein, R. K., Macknight, R., & Immink, R. G. H. (2021). PEBP proteins: The conductors of dual reproduction in plants with vegetative storage organs. Journal of Experimental Botany. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1093/jxb/erab064

Journal - Research Article

Samarth, Lee, R., Kelly, D., Turnbull, M. H., Macknight, R. C., Poole, A. M., & Jameson, P. E. (2021). Molecular control of the floral transition in the mast seeding plant Celmisia lyallii (Asteraceae). Molecular Ecology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1111/mec.15859

Journal - Research Article

Wu, R., Cooney, J., Tomes, S., Rebstock, R., Karunairetnam, S., Allan, A. C., Macknight, R. C., & Varkonyi-Gasic, E. (2021). RNAi-mediated repression of dormancy-related genes results in evergrowing apple trees. Tree Physiology, tpab007. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1093/treephys/tpab007

Journal - Research Article

Herridge, R. P., Macknight, R. C., & Brownfield, L. R. (2020). Prospects for F1 hybrid production in ryegrass. New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Research, 63(3), 405-415. doi: 10.1080/00288233.2018.1559867

Journal - Research Article

Dong, Y., Gupta, S., Sievers, R., Wargent, J. J., Wheeler, D., Putterill, J., Macknight, R., … Dijkwel, P. P. (2019). Genome draft of the Arabidopsis relative Pachycladon cheesemanii reveals novel strategies to tolerate New Zealand's high ultraviolet B radiation environment. BMC Genomics, 20, 838. doi: 10.1186/s12864-019-6084-4

Journal - Research Article

McCallum, J., Laing, W., Bulley, S., Thomson, S., Catanach, A., Shaw, M., … Chisnall, M., Lee, R., Macknight, R., & Seal, A. (2019). Molecular characterisation of a supergene conditioning super-high vitamin C in kiwifruit hybrids. Plants, 8(7), 237. doi: 10.3390/plants8070237

Journal - Research Article

Samarth, Lee, R., Song, J., Macknight, R. C., & Jameson, P. E. (2019). Identification of flowering-time genes in mast flowering plants using De Novo transcriptomic analysis. PLoS ONE, 14(8), e0216267. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0216267

Journal - Research Article

Wu, R., Wang, T., Richardson, A. C., Allan, A. C., Macknight, R. C., & Varkonyi-Gasic, E. (2019). Histone modification and activation by SOC1-like and drought stress-related transcription factors may regulate AcSVP2 expression during kiwifruit winter dormancy. Plant Science, 281, 242-250. doi: 10.1016/j.plantsci.2018.12.001

Journal - Research Article

Bräuning, S., Catanach, A., Lord, J. M., Bicknell, R., & Macknight, R. C. (2018). Comparative transcriptome analysis of the wild-type model apomict Hieracium praealtum and its loss of parthenogenesis (lop) mutant. BMC Plant Biology, 18, 206. doi: 10.1186/s12870-018-1423-1

Journal - Research Article

Fudge, J. B., Lee, R. H., Laurie, R. E., Mysore, K. S., Wen, J., Weller, J. L., & Macknight, R. C. (2018). Medicago truncatula SOC1 genes are up-regulated by environmental cues that promote flowering. Frontiers in Plant Science, 9, 496. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2018.00496

Journal - Research Article

Khosa, J., Lee, R., Joshi, S., Shaw, M., McCallum, J., & Macknight, R. (2018). A guide for the cultivation of onion under controlled environment conditions. HortScience, 53(12), 1746-1749. doi: 10.21273/HORTSCI13515-18

Journal - Research Article

Talaroa, G., Harbison-Price, N., Ferguson, S. A., Carter, G. P., Williamson, D. A., Macknight, R. C., Cook, G. M., & Helkal, A. (2018). Complete genome sequence of a New Zealand isolate of the bovine pathogen Streptococcus uberis. Genome Announcements, 6(9), e00119-18. doi: 10.1128/genomeA.00119-18

Journal - Research Article

Wu, R., Wang, T., Allan, A. C., Macknight, R. C., & Varkonyi-Gasic, E. (2018). Overexpression of both AcSVP1 and AcSVP4 delays budbreak in kiwifruit A. chinensis var. deliciosa, but only AcSVP1 delays flowering in model plants. Environmental & Experimental Botany, 153, 262-270. doi: 10.1016/j.envexpbot.2018.06.010

Journal - Research Article

Wu, R., Wang, T., Warren, B. A. W., Thomson, S. J., Allan, A. C., Macknight, R. C., & Varkonyi‑Gasic, E. (2018). Kiwifruit SVP2 controls developmental and drought-stress pathways. Plant Molecular Biology, 96(3), 233-244. doi: 10.1007/s11103-017-0688-3

Journal - Research Article

Macknight, R. C., Laing, W. A., Bulley, S. M., Broad, R. C., Johnson, A. A. T., & Hellens, R. P. (2017). Increasing ascorbate levels in crops to enhance human nutrition and plant abiotic stress tolerance. Current Opinion in Biotechnology, 44, 153-160. doi: 10.1016/j.copbio.2017.01.011

Journal - Research Article

Ridge, S., Deokar, A., Lee, R., Daba, K., Macknight, R. C., Weller, J. L., & Tar’an, B. (2017). The chickpea Early Flowering 1 (Efl1) locus is an ortholog of Arabidopsis ELF3. Plant Physiology, 175, 802-815. doi: 10.1104/pp.17.00082

Journal - Research Article

Wu, R., Tomes, S., Karunairetnam, S., Tustin, S. D., Hellens, R. P., Allan, A. C., Macknight, R. C., & Varkonyi-Gasic, E. (2017). SVP-like MADS box genes control dormancy and budbreak in apple. Frontiers in Plant Science, 8, 477. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2017.00477

Journal - Research Article

Wu, R., Wang, T., Warren, B. A., Allan, A. C., Macknight, R. C., & Varkonyi-Gasic, E. (2017). Kiwifruit SVP2 gene prevents premature budbreak during dormancy. Journal of Experimental Botany, 68(5), 1071-1082. doi: 10.1093/jxb/erx014

Journal - Research Article

Bond, D. M., Albert, N. W., Lee, R. H., Gillard, G. B., Brown, C. M., Hellens, R. P., & Macknight, R. C. (2016). Infiltration-RNAseq: Transcriptome profiling of Agrobacterium-mediated infiltration of transcription factors to discover gene function and expression networks in plants. Plant Methods, 12, 41. doi: 10.1186/s13007-016-0141-7

Journal - Research Article

Hellens, R. P., Brown, C. M., Chisnall, M. A. W., Waterhouse, P. M., & Macknight, R. C. (2016). The emerging world of small ORFs. Trends in Plant Science, 21(4), 317-328. doi: 10.1016/j.tplants.2015.11.005

Journal - Research Article

Khosa, J. S., Lee, R., Bräuning, S., Lord, J., Pither-Joyce, M., McCallum, J., & Macknight, R. C. (2016). Doubled haploid 'CUDH2107' as a reference for bulb onion (Allium cepa L.) research: Development of a transcriptome catalogue and identification of transcripts associated with male fertility. PLoS ONE, 11(11), e0166568. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0166568

Journal - Research Article

Ridge, S., Sussmilch, F. C., Hecht, V., Vander Schoor, J. K., Lee, R., Aubert, G., … Macknight, R. C., & Weller, J. L. (2016). Identification of LATE BLOOMER2 as a CYCLING DOF FACTOR homolog reveals conserved and divergent features of the flowering response to photoperiod in pea. Plant Cell, 28(10), 2545-2559. doi: 10.1105/tpc.15.01011

Journal - Research Article

Khosa, J. S., McCallum, J., Dhatt, A. S., & MacKnight, R. C. (2015). Enhancing onion breeding using molecular tools. Plant Breeding, 9-20. doi: 10.1111/pbr.12330

Journal - Research Article

Laing, W. A., Martínez-Sánchez, M., Wright, M. A., Bulley, S. M., Brewster, D., Dare, A. P., … Macknight, R. C., & Hellens, R. P. (2015). An upstream open reading frame Is essential for feedback regulation of ascorbate biosynthesis in Arabidopsis. Plant Cell, 27(3), 772-786. doi: 10.1105/tpc.114.133777

Journal - Research Article

Zhang, H., Luo, M., Day, R. C., Talbot, M. J., Ivanova, A., Ashton, A. R., … Macknight, R. C., … Koltunow, A. M. (2015). Developmentally regulated HEART STOPPER, a mitochondrially targeted L18 ribosomal protein gene, is required for cell division, differentiation, and seed development in Arabidopsis. Journal of Experimental Botany, 66(19), 5867-5880. doi: 10.1093/jxb/erv296

Journal - Research Article

Baldwin, S., Revanna, R., Pither-Joyce, M., Shaw, M., Wright, K., Thomson, S., … Lee, R., Macknight, R., & McCallum, J. (2014). Genetic analyses of bolting in bulb onion (Allium cepa L.). Theoretical & Applied Genetics, 127(3), 535-547. doi: 10.1007/s00122-013-2232-4

Journal - Research Article

Herridge, R. P., Day, R. C., & Macknight, R. C. (2014). The role of the MCM2-7 helicase complex during Arabidopsis seed development. Plant Molecular Biology, 86(1-2), 69-84. doi: 10.1007/s11103-014-0213-x

Journal - Research Article

Jaudal, M., Monash, J., Zhang, L., Wen, J., Mysore, K. S., Macknight, R., & Putterill, J. (2014). Overexpression of Medicago SVP genes causes floral defects and delayed flowering in Arabidopsis but only affects floral development in Medicago. Journal of Experimental Botany, 65(2), 429-442. doi: 10.1093/jxb/ert384

Journal - Research Article

Wong, A. C. S., Hecht, V. F. G., Picard, K., Diwadkar, P., Laurie, R. E., Wen, J., … Macknight, R. C., & Weller, J. L. (2014). Isolation and functional analysis of CONSTANS-LIKE genes suggests that a central role for CONSTANS in flowering time control is not evolutionarily conserved in Medicago truncatula. Frontiers in Plant Science, 5, 486. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2014.00486

Journal - Research Article

Lee, R., Baldwin, S., Kenel, F., McCallum, J., & Macknight, R. (2013). FLOWERING LOCUS T genes control onion bulb formation and flowering. Nature Communications, 4, 2884. doi: 10.1038/ncomms3884

Journal - Research Article

Baldwin, S., Revanna, R., Thomson, S., Pither-Joyce, M., Wright, K., Crowhurst, R., … Macknight, R., & McCallum, J. A. (2012). A toolkit for bulk PCR-based marker design from next-generation sequence data: Application for development of a framework linkage map in bulb onion (Allium cepa L.). BMC Genomics, 13, 637. doi: 10.1186/1471-2164-13-637

Journal - Research Article

Weller, J. L., Chee Liew, L., Hecht, V. F. G., Rajandran, V., Laurie, R. E., Ridge, S., … Macknight, R. C., & Lejeune-Hénaut, I. (2012). A conserved molecular basis for photoperiod adaptation in two temperate legumes. PNAS, 109(51), 21158-21163. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1207943110

Journal - Research Article

Baldwin, S. J., Dodds, K. G., Auvray, B., Genet, R. A., Macknight, R. C., & Jacobs, J. M. E. (2011). Association mapping of cold-induced sweetening in potato using historical phenotypic data. Annals of Applied Biology, 158(3), 248-256. doi: 10.1111/j.1744-7348.2011.00459.x

Journal - Research Article

Hecht, V., Laurie, R. E., Vander Schoor, J. K., Ridge, S., Knowles, C. L., Chee Liew, L., … Macknight, R. C., & Weller, J. L. (2011). The pea GIGAS gene is a FLOWERING LOCUS T homolog necessary for graft-transmissible specification of flowering but not for responsiveness to photoperiod. Plant Cell, 23(1), 147-161. doi: 10.1105/tpc.110.081042

Journal - Research Article

Herridge, R. P., Day, R. C., Baldwin, S., & Macknight, R. C. (2011). Rapid analysis of seed size in Arabidopsis for mutant and QTL discovery. Plant Methods, 7. doi: 10.1186/1746-4811-7-3

Journal - Research Article

Laurie, R. E., Diwadkar, P., Jaudal, M., Zhang, L., Hecht, V., Wen, J., … Macknight, R. C. (2011). The Medicago FLOWERING LOCUS T homolog, MtFTa1, is a key regulator of flowering time. Plant Physiology, 156(4), 2207-2224. doi: 10.1104/pp.111.180182

Journal - Research Article

Yeoh, C. C., Balcerowicz, M., Laurie, R., Macknight, R., & Putterill, J. (2011). Developing a method for customized induction of flowering. BMC Biotechnology, 11, 36. doi: 10.1186/1472-6750-11-36

Journal - Research Article

Risk, J. M., Laurie, R. E., Macknight, R. C., & Day, C. L. (2010). FRIGIDA and related proteins have a conserved central domain and family specific N- and C- terminal regions that are functionally important. Plant Molecular Biology, 73, 493-505. doi: 10.1007/s11103-010-9635-2

Journal - Research Article

Simpson, G. G., Laurie, R. E., Dijkwel, P. P., Quesada, V., Stockwell, P. A., Dean, C., & Macknight, R. C. (2010). Noncanonical translation initiation of the Arabidopsis flowering time and alternative polyadenylation regulator FCA. Plant Cell, 22(11), 3764-3777. doi: 10.1105/tpc.110.077990

Journal - Research Article

Chee Liew, L., Hecht, V., Laurie, R. E., Knowles, C. L., Vander Schoor, J. K., Macknight, R. C., & Weller, J. L. (2009). DIE NEUTRALIS and LATE BLOOMER 1 contribute to regulation of the pea circadian clock. Plant Cell, 21(10), 3198-3211. doi: 10.1105/tpc.109.067223

Journal - Research Article

Day, R. C., Mueller, S., & Macknight, R. C. (2009). Identification of cytoskeleton-associated genes expressed during arabidopsis syncytial endosperm development. Plant Signaling & Behavior, 4(9), 883-886.

Journal - Research Article

Risk, J. M., Day, C. L., & Macknight, R. C. (2009). Reevaluation of abscisic acid-binding assays shows that G-Protein-Coupled Receptor2 does not bind abscisic acid. Plant Physiology, 150(1), 6-11.

Journal - Research Article

Day, R. C., Herridge, R. P., Ambrose, B. A., & Macknight, R. C. (2008). Transcriptome analysis of proliferating Arabidopsis endosperm reveals biological implications for the control of syncytial division, cytokinin signaling, and gene expression regulation. Plant Physiology, 148(4), 1964-1984. doi: 10.1104/pp.108.128108

Journal - Research Article

Risk, J. M., Macknight, R. C., & Day, C. L. (2008). FCA does not bind abscisic acid. Nature, 456(7223), E5-E6.

Journal - Research Article

Day, R. C., McNoe, L. A., & MacKnight, R. C. (2007). Transcript analysis of laser microdissected plant cells. Physiologia Plantarum, 129(2), 267-282.

Journal - Research Article

Day, R. C., McNoe, L., & Macknight, R. C. (2007). Evaluation of global RNA amplification and its use for high-throughput transcript analysis of laser-microdissected endosperm. International Journal of Plant Genomics, 2007, 61028.

Journal - Research Article

Putterill, J., Laurie, R., & Macknight, R. (2004). It's time to flower: The genetic control of flowering time. BioEssays, 26(4), 363-373.

Journal - Research Article

Macknight, R. C., Duroux, M., Laurie, R., Dijkwel, P., Simpson, G., & Dean, C. (2002). Functional significance of the alternative transcript processing of the Arabidopsis floral promoter FCA. Plant Cell, 14, 877-888.

Journal - Research Article

Macknight, R., Duroux, M., Laurie, R., Dijkwel, P., Simpson, G., & Dean, C. (2002). Functional significance of the alterative transcript processing of the arabidopsis floral promoter FCA. Plant Cell, 14, 877-888.

Journal - Research Article

Page, T., Macknight, R. C., Yang, C.-H., & Dean, C. (1999). Genetic interactions of FCA, an Arabidopsis gene controlling flowering time, with genes regulating floral initiation. Plant Journal, 17, 231-239.

Journal - Research Article

Macknight, R. C., Lister, C., & Dean, C. (1998). Rice cDNA clones OsGRP1 and OsGRP2 (Accession Nos. AJ002893 and AJ002894, respectively) define two classes of glycine rich RNA-binding proteins. Plant Physiology, 117, 1527.

Journal - Research Article

Macknight, R. C., Love, K., & Dean, C. (1998). Identification of an Arabidopsis cDNA encoding a novel glycine rich RNA-binding protein (Accession No. AJ002892) and mapping of the gene family onto the Arabidopsis physical map. Plant Physiology, 117, 1526.

Journal - Research Article

Macknight, R. C., Bancroft, I., Lister, C., Page, T. A., & et al (1997). FCA, a gene controlling floweing time in Arabidopsis, encodes a protein containing RNA binding domains. Cell, 89, 737-747.

Journal - Research Article

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