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The plant catabolism laboratories

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


portrait photo of Florence


Florentine Ballhaus , PhD student

Samujjal Bhattacharjee


Dr. Samujjal Bhattacharjee, Postdoc


Dr. Peter Bozhkov, Professor

Peter's CV


Dr. Adrian Dauphinee, Researcher

Adrian’s webpage




Dr. Glenn Hicks, The August T Larsson Guest Researcher

Glenn's pages on ResearchGate






Maxence James


Maxence James, Postdoc

Dominic Kuang

Dominic Kuang,

PhD Student



Dr. Tomas Linder, Senior lecturer

Tomas' CV



Image of Shamik


Dr. Shamik Mazumdar, Postdoc



Dr. Elena (Alyona) Minina, Associate Professor

Alyona's webpage

Panagiotis Moschou


Dr. Panagiotis Moschou, Associate Professor

Panagiotis' webpage

Shuning Qi


Shuning Qi, PhD Student

Shanna Romand



Dr. Shanna Romand, Postdoc


Simon Stael.jpg


Dr. Simon Stael, Associate senior lecturer

Simon's website

Adrian Suarez Covarrubias

Dr. Adrian Suarez Covarrubias

Alessia Suriano, MSc student



Portrait photo

Dr. Vladimir Uversky, The August T Larsson Guest Researcher

Vladimir’s group webpage

Dr Yong Zou , Postdoc



Nicolò Brugnone

Dr. Igor Sabljić

Dr. Sanjana Holla

Dr. Anna Åsman

Dr. Marcel Bentancor

Dr. Eduardo Berenguer

Dr. Catarina Cardoso

Dr. Kerstin Dalman

Dr. Pernilla Elander

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. Anna Maria Eisele

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

Anna Andersen Vikhagen

Ali Burak Yildiz

Dr. Andrey Zamyatnin

Dr. Viktoria Zamyatnina

Selected recent publications

Liu C, Mentzelopoulou A, Hatzianestis IH, Tzagkarakis E, Skaltsogiannis V, Ma X, Michalopoulou VA, Romero-Campero FJ, Romero-Losada AB, Sarris PF, Marhavy P, Bölter B, Kanterakis A, Gutierrez-Beltran E, Moschou PN. A proxitome-RNA-capture approach reveals that processing bodies repress coregulated hub genes. Plant Cell. 2024 Feb 26;36(3):559-584. 

Zou Y, Sabljić I, Horbach N, Dauphinee AN, Åsman A, Sancho Temino L, Minina EA, Drag M, Stael S, Poreba M, Ståhlberg J, Bozhkov PV. Thermoprotection by a cell membrane-localized metacaspase in a green alga. Plant Cell. 2024 Feb 26;36(3):665-687. 

Ohlsson JA, Leong JX, Elander PH, Ballhaus F, Holla S, Dauphinee AN, Johansson J, Lommel M, Hofmann G, Betnér S, Sandgren M, Schumacher K, Bozhkov PV, Minina EA. SPIRO - the automated Petri plate imaging platform designed by biologists, for biologists. Plant J. 2023 Dec 23. doi: 10.1111/tpj.16587. 

Eisele-Bürger AM, Eisele F, Malmgren Hill S, Hao X, Schneider KL, Imamoglu R, Balchin D, Liu B, Hartl FU, Bozhkov PV, Nyström T. Calmodulin regulates protease versus co-chaperone activity of a metacaspase. Cell Rep. 2023 Nov 28;42(11):113372. 

Stael S, Sabljić I, Audenaert D, Andersson T, Tsiatsiani L, Kumpf RP, Vidal-Albalat A, Lindgren C, Vercammen D, Jacques S, Nguyen L, Njo M, Fernández-Fernández ÁD, Beunens T, Timmerman E, Gevaert K, Van Montagu M, Ståhlberg J, Bozhkov PV, Linusson A, Beeckman T, Van Breusegem F. 2023. Structure-function study of a Ca2+-independent metacaspase involved in lateral root emergence. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 120(22):e2303480120. 

Fernández-Fernández ÁD, Stael S, Van Breusegem F. 2023. Mechanisms controlling plant proteases and their substrates. Cell Death Differ. 30(4):1047-1058. 

Xie Z, Zhao S, Li Y, Deng Y, Shi Y, Chen X, Li Y, Li H, Chen C, Wang X, Liu E, Tu Y, Shi P, Tong J, Gutierrez-Beltran E, Li J, Bozhkov PV, Qian W, Zhou M, Wang W. 2023. Phenolic acid-induced phase separation and translation inhibition mediate plant interspecific competition. Nat Plants. doi: 10.1038/s41477-023-01499-6. 


Gutierrez-Beltran E, Strader L, Bozhkov P. 2023. Focus on biomolecular condensates. Plant Cell. doi: 10.1093/plcell/koad182.


Solis-Miranda J, Chodasiewicz M, Skirycz A, Fernie AR, Moschou PN, Bozhkov PV, Gutierrez-Beltran E. 2023. Stress-related biomolecular condensates in plants. Plant Cell. doi: 10.1093/plcell/koad127.


Mountourakis F, Hatzianestis IH, Stavridou S, Bozhkov PV, Moschou PN. 2023. Concentrating and sequestering biomolecules in condensates: impact on plant biology. J Exp Bot. 74(5):1303-1308. 


Humpenöder, F., Bodirsky, B. L., Weindl, I., Lotze-Campen, H., Linder, T., & Popp, A. (2022). Projected environmental benefits of replacing beef with microbial protein. Nature605(7908), 90–96.


Leong, J. X., Raffeiner, M., Spinti, D., Langin, G., Franz-Wachtel, M., Guzman, A. R., Kim, J. G., Pandey, P., Minina, A. E., Macek, B., Hafrén, A., Bozkurt, T. O., Mudgett, M. B., Börnke, F., Hofius, D., & Üstün, S. (2022). A bacterial effector counteracts host autophagy by promoting degradation of an autophagy component. The EMBO J41(13), e110352.


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, 40(17), 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

Adrian Dauphinee, Researcher
adrian.dauphinee@slu.se, +46722965430


Published: 14 April 2024 - Page editor: Adrian.Dauphinee@slu.se