President's Letter Spring 2018

29 April 2018 - By: Christine Raines

President's Letter

Christine Raines

By Christine Raines

Time is moving very quickly and I can hardly believe that I have been in this role for seven months!

The late summer was very busy at the SEB with the recruitment of our new CEO. I am very pleased to welcome Pamela Mortimer, who has been in post since last November and who you will have the opportunity to meet at the Annual Meeting to be held in Florence, Italy in July this year – you can read more about Pamela in our SEB News article.

I would also like to take this opportunity to say farewell and to thank Bennett Young for his contribution to SEB through his role as part of the Journal of Experimental Botany editorial team. Many Plant Biology SEB members will have met Bennett at our Annual Meetings and know him as being both enthusiastic and helpful. Bennett is moving on to take up the role of Managing Editor with the new journal Plants, People and Planet – all best wishes for your future career and hope to see you at future SEB meetings!
In my first letter as President I briefly touched on the role of Learned Societies and I just wanted to pick this up to highlight the opportunity that our Annual Meeting provides as a platform for you to network, show off your new and interesting data and to learn about new and exciting findings at the forefront of biological sciences. Our programme for this summer in Florence looks amazing, covering topics at the forefront of animal, plant and cell biology and education and outreach. I would like to thank those who have conceptualised and organised sessions, not forgetting our Section Chairs and members for their enthusiasm and vision in developing and finalising such an excellent programme.

I would also like to emphasise the focus that SEB has had over many years on encouraging and supporting early career scientists, so do please get involved - submit an abstract to give a talk or present a poster, this may well provide you with the next step in your career! Attendance at SEB meetings is open to all, but the most economical way to attend our meeting is to be a member of SEB – so do encourage colleagues to join our Society. There are many more benefits of membership of the Society - access to travel funds, opportunities to win awards and, more importantly, to be part of an international community of researchers. You may also want to consider contributing to the Society through serving on one of our Sections – Plant, Animal, Cell or SEB+ - or organising a session at our Annual Meeting.

This year marks the end of our current five-year strategic plan and we will be holding a Council Strategy day in November to scope out our direction for the period 2018– 2023. This is an exciting time for our discipline of Biological Sciences and this is reflected by the fact that SEB membership is growing year on year.

I would like to thank you for reading this letter and I wish you a productive and happy 2018. I look forward to seeing you in Florence!
Category: Spotlight on Members
Christine Raines

Prof. Christine Raines

Christine is currently Professor of Plant Molecular Physiology in the Department of Biological Sciences, University of Essex.  She studied for her PhD in the Department of Botany, University of Glasgow investigating photosynthetic electron transport function. This was followed by 3 years at what was the Plant Breeding Institute in Cambrdige where she started to explore the use of molecular techniques to manipulate photosynthesis. Since that time Christine’s main area of research is the photosynthetic carbon reduction cycle which is the primary pathway of carbon fixation in plants. 

This important pathway continues to be a priority area for study with the aim, of identifying targets for manipulation, to improve crop yields. During the past 15 years she has worked on a number of aspects of this cycle. Christine is particularly interested in the integration of this primary carbon fixation pathway and wider plant metabolism.