Crop Science Centre

Driven by impact, fuelled by excellence

Lovely Mae Lawas

Lovely Mae Lawas

Research Associate
Crop breeding technologies

lml58 [at]

I study plant responses to abiotic stresses using molecular, biochemical, and physiological approaches. My interest in research started when I conducted undergraduate thesis for my bachelor’s degree in Biology at the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB). Afterwards, I worked as a Researcher at the International Rice Research Institute while pursuing a master’s degree in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology from UPLB. I then moved to Germany and obtained my doctoral degree from the University of Potsdam and the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology, where I studied the effects of combined drought and heat stress on rice. I then did postdoctoral research on plant natural products and elevated temperature impacts in blueberry at Auburn University in the US. In Natasha Yelina’s lab, I will be investigating reproductive heat tolerance with a focus on meiosis in cowpea and Arabidopsis.


Lawas LMF, Kamileen MO, Buell CR, O’Connor SE, Leisner CP (2023) Transcriptome-based identification and functional characterization of iridoid synthase involved in monotropein biosynthesis in blueberry. Plant Direct 7: e512,

Edger PP, Iorizzo M, Bassil NV, Benevenuto J, Ferrão LFV, Giongo L, Hummer K, Lawas LMF, Leisner CP, Li C, et al. (2022) There and back again; historical perspective and future directions for Vaccinium breeding and research studies. Hortic Res 9: uhac083, 

Desai JS, Lawas LMF, Valente AM, Leman AR, Grinevich DO, Jagadish SVK, Doherty CJ (2021) Warm nights disrupt global transcriptional rhythms in field-grown rice panicles. P Natl Acad Sci USA 118: e2025899118,

Schaarschmidt S, Lawas LMF, Kopka J, Jagadish SVK, Zuther E (2021) Physiological and molecular attributes contribute to high night temperature tolerance in cereals. Plant, Cell Environ 44: 2034–2048, 

Schaarschmidt S, Fischer A, Lawas LMF, Alam R, Septiningsih EM, Bailey-Serres J, Jagadish SVK, Huettel B, Hincha DK, Zuther E (2020) Utilizing PacBio Iso-seq for novel transcript and gene discovery of abiotic stress responses in Oryza sativa L. Int J Mol Sci 21: 8148, 

Schaarschmidt S, Lawas LMF, Glaubitz U, Li X, Erban A, Kopka J, Jagadish SVK, Hincha DK, Zuther E (2020) Season affects yield and metabolic profiles of rice (Oryza sativa) under high night temperature stress in the field. Int J Mol Sci 21: 3187, 

Lawas LMF, Erban A, Kopka J, Jagadish SVK, Zuther E, Hincha DK (2019) Metabolic responses of rice source and sink organs during recovery from combined drought and heat stress in the field. GigaScience 8, giz102, doi:10.1093/gigascience/giz102

Lawas LMF, Li X, Erban A, Kopka J, Jagadish SVK, Zuther E, Hincha DK (2019) Metabolic responses of rice cultivars with different tolerance to combined drought and heat stress under field conditions. GigaScience 8, giz050, doi:10.1093/gigascience/giz050 

Slabaugh E, Desai JS, Sartor RC, Lawas LMF, Jagadish SVK, Doherty CJ (2019) Analysis of differential gene expression and alternative splicing is significantly influenced by choice of reference genome. RNA 25: 669-684, doi: 10.1261/rna.070227.118 

Lawas LMF, Shi W, Yoshimoto M, Hasegawa T, Hincha DK, Zuther E, Jagadish SVK (2018) Combined drought and heat stress impact during flowering and grain filling in contrasting rice cultivars grown under field conditions. F Crop Res 229: 66–77,