Professor Christine H. Foyer

Professor Christine H. Foyer


I am a Professor of Plant Sciences at the University of Leeds, UK. I am also a Professor at The University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia. I received my PhD from Kings College, London, UK and have held senior posts at the Institut Nationale Recherché Agronomique (France), Rothamsted Research (UK), the Institute of Grassland and Environmental Research (UK) and the University of Newcastle upon Tyne (UK).

I am a member of the French Academy of Agriculture and am the Secretary General of the Federation of European Societies of Plant Biologists. I am also a member pf the Board of Directors of the American Society of Plant Biology. I am an Annals of Botany Company Board Member, a Senior Editor for Plant, Cell and Environment, an Associate Editor for the Biochemical Journal and for Food and Energy Security. I am also an Editor on the Boards of Physiologia Plantarum and the Journal of Experimental Botany. I am a member of several funding panels including ERCEA ADG LS9, FWO - Bio1 (Belgium) and the BBSRC (UK) Pool of Experts. I have over 400 published papers and currently has an H-Index of 87.


  • Research Director
  • Module Manager

Research interests

The Foyer lab is interested in the regulation of plant growth and development under optimal and stress (drought, chilling, high light, aphid infestation) conditions. I am interested in how primary processes (photosynthesis, respiration) alter the reduction/oxidation (redox) status of cells and generate signals that regulate plant growth and defence responses. My lab uses multidisciplinary approaches incorporating -omics technologies, molecular and biochemical techniques and whole plant physiology to study the relationships between primary metabolism, gene expression and growth under optimal and stress conditions. While tackling fundamental research problems of intrinsic scientific interest, I am always mindful of the needs of agriculture and food security. In addition to undertaking fundamental studies on model plant species such as Arabidopsis thaliana, research in my lab is undertaken to enhance stress tolerance in a range of crop species particularly soybean, pea, faba bean, maize, barley and wheat. Current projects in progress in my lab include: (1) characterisation of redox processes that regulate the cell cycle, (2)  identification of proteins that are involved in redox signal transduction between chloroplasts/mitochondria and the nucleus such as Whirly1 and the late embryogenesis abundant protein AtLEA5, (3) characterisation of the functions of cysteine and serine proteases in the control of stress-induced senescence, (4) the influence of abiotic stresses such as high light and nitrogen deficiency on local and systemic responses to aphids leading to resistance..

Christine Foyer

The following projects are currently in progress in the Foyer laboratory:
  • Plant stress responses particularly redox regulation of the cell cycle.
  • The functions of WHIRLY proteins in chloroplast development, stress tolerance and chloroplast to nucleus signalling in Arabidopsis, wheat, maize and barley.
  • The  roles of ascorbate and glutathione in plant growth and defence, particularly through interactions with abscisic acid, auxin and stigolactones.
  • The role of Late Embryogenesis Abundant (LEA)5 in plant stress tolerance.
  • The roles of stigolactones in the responses of legumes to dark chilling and acclimation to high atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. 
  • The roles of cysteine and serine proteases and their inhibitors  in  controlling of leaf (Arabidopsis, soybean) and nodule (soybean) senescence.
  • The interactions between abiotic stresses and plant responses to aphids in Arabidopsis and legumes.
<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • PhD - 1977

Student education

Studentship information

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>