Herbert Kronzucker

faculty_img Academic Title: Professor

Campus: UTSC

CSB Appointment: Cross Appointment

Primary Undergraduate Department:
Biological Sciences, UTSC

Graduate Programs:
Cell & Systems Biology

Titles and Honors:
Canada Research Chair in Systems Biology of Plant Nutrition and Ion Transport

Academic or Administrative Appointments:
Inaugural Director, Canadian Centre for World Hunger Research (CCWHR)

Ph.D. University of British Columbia 1996


Mailing Address
Department of Cell & Systems Biology
University of Toronto
1265 Military Trail
Scarborough, ON M1C 1A4


Contact Information
Office phone: 416-287-7436
Office: SY 264
Lab: SY 270
Lab phone: 416-287-7427
Email: herbert.kronzucker@utoronto.ca
URL: http://www.utsc.utoronto.ca/~herbertk/


Research Areas
Cell Biology
Chemical Biology
Plant Biology
Systems Biology



Declining soil fertility, increasing soil salinization, and a burgeoning human population have led to severe strains on the world’s agricultural systems. A key factor in the relief from such strains is the better understanding of plant responses to soil nutrients and toxicants, and the application of this understanding to the improvement of cultivars and farming practices. Our laboratory seeks to directly engage in this urgent mission, by use of a combination of physiological approaches designed to address questions of ion acquisition and stress tolerance at cellular and whole-plant levels, in the world’s most important plant species. We examine the role of nutrient ion fluxes at cellular, whole-organism, and ecosystem levels, focusing on yield potential in cereals, cellular ionic interactions, and drought and salt stresses. Our approach is multidisciplinary, ranging from mathematical modelling to radiotracing of ion fluxes and ecological analyses in the field. The techniques we use include the subcellular tracing of ion fluxes and compartmentation, the genetic manipulation of plant metabolism and nutrient acquisition, electrophysiology, gas exchange, ionic and metabolic profiling of tissues, and analyses of plant growth and yield. We strive to investigate the physiology of intact model and non-model organisms, and develop methods to tackle the complexity associated with whole systems.