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The plant catabolism laboratory

We are interested in the mechanisms and functions of catabolic processes during development, aging and stress response at the molecular, cellular and organismal levels. Our experimental models span more than one billion years of evolution and range from unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas and budding yeasts to higher plants, such as Arabidopsis, tobacco and Norway spruce

Current lab members

Dr. Anna Åsman, Postdoc

portrait photo of Florence

Florentine Ballhaus, pre-doctoral student

Dr. Peter Bozhkov, Professor

Peter's CV

Dr. Kerstin Dalman, Research engineer

Dr. Adrian Dauphinee, Researcher

Adrian’s webpage





Dr. Anna Maria Eisele, Postdoc

Pernilla Elander, PhD student

Dr. Glenn Hicks, The August T Larsson Guest Researcher

Glenn's pages on ResearchGate


Sanjana Holla, PhD student


Dr. Tomas Linder, Senior lecturer

Tomas' CV

Dr. Elena (Alyona) Minina, Associate Professor

Alyona's webpage

Igor Sabljic

Dr Igor Sabljic, Postdoc

Portrait photo

Dr. Vladimir Uversky, The August T Larsson Guest Researcher

Vladimir’s group webpage



Dr. Yong Zou, Postdoc



Dr. Marcel Bentancor
Dr. Eduardo Berenguer
Dr. Catarina Cardoso
Ana Jesús Vega de Armas
Dr. Lada Filonova
Dr. Kazutake Fukada
Dr. Anna Golovko
Dr. Emilio Gutierrez-Beltran, Emilio’s group webpage
Therese Jonsson
Dr. Panagiotis Moschou, Panos' group webpage 
Sofiana Fajriah Rahmah
Mahmudur Rahman
Dr. Prashanth Ramachandran
Dr. Salim Hossain Reza
Dr. Eugene Savenkov, Eugene’s group webpage 
Dr. Maria Fernanda Suarez, Nandi’s group webpage 
Dr. Budhi Sagar Tiwari, Budhi’s group webpage 
Amareswar Vangala
Dr. Victoria Sanchez Vera
Ali Burak Yildiz
Dr. Andrey Zamyatnin
Dr. Viktoria Zamyatnina

Selected recent publications

Gutierrez-Beltran E, Elander PH, Dalman K, Dayhoff GW 2nd, Moschou PN, Uversky VN, Crespo JL, Bozhkov PV (2021) Tudor staphylococcal nuclease is a docking platform for stress granule components and is essential for SnRK1 activation in Arabidopsis. EMBO J e105043


Minina, EA., Dauphinee, A.N, Ballhaus F., Gogvadze V., Smertenko A.P., Bozhkov PV (2021) Apoptosis is not conserved in plants as revealed by critical examination of a model for plant apoptosis-like cell death. BMC Biology 19, 100.


Zou Y and Bozhkov PV (2021) Chlamydomonas proteases: classification, phylogeny and molecular regulation. J Exp Bot DOI: 10.1093/jxb/erab383


Minina EA, Staal J, Alvarez VE, Berges JA, Berman-Frank I, Beyaert R, Bidle KD, Bornancin F, Casanova M, Cazzulo J, Choi CJ, Coll NS, Dixit VM, Dolinar M, Fasel N, Funk C, Gallois P, Gevaert K, Gutierrez-Beltran E, Hailfinger S, Klemencic M, Koonin EV, Krappmann D, Linusson A, Machado M, Madeo F, Megeney LA, Moschou PN, Mottram, JC, Nyström T, Osiewacz HD, Overall CM, Pandey KC, Ruland J, Salvesen GS, Shi Y, Smertenko A, Stael S, Ståhlberg J, Suarez MF, Thome M, Tuominen H, Van Breusegem F, van der Hoorn RAL, Vardi A, Zhivotovsky B, Lam E and Bozhkov PV (2020) Classification and Nomencalture of Metacaspases and Paracaspases: No More Confusion with Caspases. Molecular Cell 77, 927-929.


AN Dauphinee, C Cardoso, K Dalman, JA Ohlsson, S Berglund  Fick, S Robert, GR Hicks, PV Bozhkov, EA Minina (2019) Chemical screening pipeline for identification of specific plant autophagy modulators. Plant Physiol. 2019 Nov;181(3):855-866.


Elander PH, Minina EA, and Bozhkov PV (2018) Autophagy in turnover of lipid stores: trans-kingdom comparison. J Exp Bot 69, 1301-1311. 


Minina EA, Moschou PN, Vetukuri RR, Sanchez-Vera V, Cardoso C, Liu Q, Elander PH, Dalman K, Beganovic M, Yilmaz JL, Marmon S, Shabala L, Suarez MF, Ljung K, Novák O, Shabala S, Stymne S, Hofius D and Bozhkov PV (2018) Transcriptional stimulation of rate-limiting components of the autophagic pathway improves plant fitness. J Exp Bot 69, 1415-1432.


Üstün S, Hafrén A, Liu Q, Marshall RS, Minina EA, Bozhkov PV, Vierstra RD, Hofius D (2018) Bacteria exploit autophagy for proteasome degradation and enhanced virulence in plants. Plant Cell 30, 668-685


Minina EA, Moschou PN, and Bozhkov PV (2017) Limited and digestive proteolysis: crosstalk between evolutionary conserved pathways​. New Phytologist 215, 958–964.


Minina EA, Coll NS, Tuominen H and Bozhkov PV (2017) Metacaspases versus caspases in development and cell fate regulation. Cell Death and Differentiation 24, 1314–1325.


Minina EA, Reza SH, Gutierrez-Beltran E, Elander P, Bozhkov PV and Moschou PN (2017) Arabidopsis homologue of Scc4/MAU2 is essential for plant embryogenesis. J Cell Sci 130: 1051-1063.


Gutierrez-BeltranE, Denisenko TV, Zhivotovsky B and Bozhkov PV (2016) Tudor Staphylococcal Nuclease: biochemistry and functions. Cell Death and Differentiation 23, 1739-1748.


Moschou PN, Gutierrez-Beltran E, Bozhkov PV, Smertenko AP (2016) Separase Promotes Microtubule Polymerization by Activating CENP-E-Related Kinesin Kin7. Developmental Cell 37: 350-361.


Moschou PN, Savenkov EI, Minina EA, Fukada K, Reza SH, Gutierrez-Beltran E, Sanchez-Vera V, Suarez MF, Hussey P, Smertenko AP and Bozhkov PV (2016) EXTRA SPINDLE POLES (Separase) controls anisotropic cell expansion in Norway spruce (Picea abies) embryos independently from its role in anaphase progression. New Phytologist doi: 10.1111/nph.14012


Gutierrez-Beltran E, Moschou PN, Smertenko AP and Bozhkov PV (2015) Tudor Staphylococcal Nuclease Links Formation of Stress Granules and Processing Bodies with mRNA Catabolism in Arabidopsis.  Plant Cell 27: 926-943.


Minina EA, Bozhkov PV and Hofius D (2014) Autophagy as initiator or executioner of cell death. Trends in Plant Science 19: 692-697.


P.V. Bozhkov and G. Salvesen (Editors). Caspases, Paracaspases and Metacaspases.Series: Methods in Molecular Biology, Vol. 1133 Humana Press. 2014. ISBN 978-1-4939-0356-6.
Minina E, Filonova L, Fukada K, Savenkov EI, Sanchez-Vera V, Suarez MF, Daniel G, Clapham D, Gogvadze V, Zhivotovsky B, Smertenko AP and Bozhkov PV (2013) Metacaspase and autophagy determine the mode of plant cell death. Journal of Cell Biology 203: 917-927 
Peng Zhao, Xue-mei Zhou, Li-yao Zhang, Wei Wang, Li-gang Ma, Li-bo Yang, Xiong-bo Peng, Bozhkov PV, Meng-xiang Sun. (2013) A bipartite molecular module controls cell death activation in the basal cell lineage of plant embryos. PLOS Biology 11(9): e1001655
Moschou PN, Smertenko AP, Fukada K, Savenkov EI, Minina EA, Robert S, Hussey PJ and Bozhkov PV (2013) The Caspase-Related Protease Separase (EXTRA SPINDLE POLES) Regulates Cell Polarity and Cytokinesis in Arabidopsis. Plant Cell 25: 2171-2186
Minina EA, Sanchez-Vera V, Moschou PN, Suarez MF, Sundberg E, Weih M and Bozhkov PV (2013) Autophagy mediates caloric restriction-induced lifespan extension in Arabidopsis. Aging Cell 12: 327-329

How to join the lab

We are always on the lookout for highly motivated colleagues to join our lab. If you are interested, please apply for the open positions below:


If you want to join us with your own postdoctoral project grant within the research scope of the lab, please provide max one page-long summary of the proposed project, CV and names of two references. Funding bodies to consider: 

Federation of European Biochemical Societies (FEBS)

EMBO Fellowship (EMBO)

Marie Curie Fellowship (MC)

Human Frontier Science Program (HFSP)  

Wenner-Gren Foundations

Carl Trygger Foundation

Master projects opportunities!

At the moment we have the following master projects available:



  • “Exploring autophagy-mediated stress granule degradation in plants” with Dr. Adrian Dauphinee as supervisor. Please contact Adrian if you are interested.


  • “Exciting search for Chlamydomonas metacaspase interactors by yeast-two hybrid library screening” with Dr. Yong Zou as supervisor. Please contact Yong if you are interested.


Peter Bozhkov, Professor
peter.bozhkov@slu.se, +4618673228

Kerstin Dalman, PhD
kerstin.dalman@slu.se, +4618673187


Published: 05 April 2022 - Page editor: Henrik.Hansson@slu.se