Ottoline Leyser

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Dame Ottoline Leyser
Born Henrietta Miriam Ottoline Leyser
(1965-03-07) 7 March 1965 (age 51)
Citizenship United Kingdom
Fields Plant Developmental Biology[1]
Alma mater University of Cambridge[2]
Thesis An analysis of fasciated mutants of Arabidopsis thaliana and the role of cytokinin in this phenotype (1990)
Known for GARNet: Genomic Arabidopsis Resource Network[3]
Notable awards
Spouse Stephen John Day (m. 1986)[2]
Children 2[2]

Dame Henrietta Miriam Ottoline Leyser Day DBE FRS (born 7 March 1965[2]), known as Ottoline Leyser, is a British plant biologist and Professor of Plant Development at the University of Cambridge and director of the Sainsbury Laboratory, Cambridge.[1][5][6][7][8][9][10][11]


Leyser was educated at Newnham College, Cambridge where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree in 1986, and a PhD in Genetics[12] in 1990 from the same University for research supervised by Ian Furner.[13]


Leyser's research interests are in the genetics of plant development and the interaction of plant hormones with the environment.[citation needed]

Awards and honours[edit]

Leyser was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 2007. Her nomination reads:

Leyser is a member of the European Molecular Biology Organisation in 2007, and appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2009 New Year Honours.[14] She is currently a member of the Nuffield Council on Bioethics and was a member of the Council’s Working Party on Biofuels (2009-2011).[15]

She was elected a foreign associate of the US National Academy of Sciences in 2012.[16]

She was appointed Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in the 2017 New Year Honours for services to plant science, science in society, and equality and diversity in science.[17]

Personal life[edit]

Leyser is the daughter of the historians Henrietta and Karl Leyser.[2] She married Stephen John Day in 1986 and has one son and one daughter.[2]


  1. ^ a b Ottoline Leyser's publications indexed by Google Scholar
  2. ^ a b c d e f LEYSER, Prof. (Henrietta Miriam) Ottoline. Who's Who. 2015 (online Oxford University Press ed.). A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc.  (subscription required)
  3. ^ Beale, M; Dupree, P; Lilley, K; Beynon, J; Trick, M; Clarke, J; Bevan, M; Bancroft, I; Jones, J; May, S; Van De Sande, K; Leyser, O (2002). "GARNet, the Genomic Arabidopsis Resource Network". Trends in Plant Science. 7 (4): 145–7. doi:10.1016/s1360-1385(01)02224-5. PMID 11950604. 
  4. ^ a b "EC/2007/26: Ottoline Leyser Certificate of Election". Royal Society. Archived from the original on 2015-06-16. 
  5. ^ "BBSRC spotlight interview". 
  6. ^ Leyser, O. (2011). "An interview with Ottoline Leyser. Interviewed by Eva Amsen". Development. 138 (22): 4815–17. doi:10.1242/dev.075333. PMID 22028022. 
  7. ^ Leyser, O. (2012). "Ottoline Leyser". Current Biology. 22 (8): R253–55. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2012.02.003. PMID 22675728. 
  8. ^ Sedwick, C. (2014). "Ottoline Leyser: The beauty of plant genetics". The Journal of Cell Biology. 204 (3): 284–85. doi:10.1083/jcb.2043pi. PMC 3912528Freely accessible. PMID 24493584. 
  9. ^ Kepinski, S.; Leyser, O. (2005). "The Arabidopsis F-box protein TIR1 is an auxin receptor". Nature. 435 (7041): 446–51. doi:10.1038/nature03542. 
  10. ^ Gray, W.M.; Kepinski, S.; Rouse, D.; Leyser, O.; Estelle, M. (2001). "Auxin regulates SCFTIR1-dependent degradation of AUX/IAA proteins". Nature. 414 (6861): 271–76. doi:10.1038/35104500. PMID 11713520. 
  11. ^ Sabatini, S.; Beis, D.; Wolkenfelt, H.; Murfett, J.; Guilfoyle, T.; Malamy, J.; Benfey, P.; Leyser, O.; Bechtold, N.; Weisbeek, P.; Scheres, B. (1999). "An auxin-dependent distal organizer of pattern and polarity in the Arabidopsis root". Cell. 99 (5): 463–72. doi:10.1016/S0092-8674(00)81535-4. PMID 10589675. 
  12. ^ Leyser, Henrietta Miriam Ottoline (1990). An analysis of fasciated mutants of Arabidopsis thaliana and the role of cytokinin in this phenotype (PhD thesis). University of Cambridge. OCLC 557279110. 
  13. ^ "Great British bioscience pioneers – Professor Ottoline Leyser". BBSRC. Archived from the original on 2015-06-16. 
  14. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 58929. p. 7. 31 December 2008.
  15. ^ Bioethics' official website,; accessed 1 January 2017.
  16. ^ "National Academy of Sciences Members and Foreign Associates Elected". National Academy of Sciences. 1 May 2012. 
  17. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 61803. p. N8. 31 December 2016.