Dr. Dawei Yan

Research Biologist

I work in the Novel Traits Development group at the Lethbridge Research and Development Centre. My main task is to develop canola plants capable of nitrogen fixation without relying on nitrogen-fixing bacteria. Additionally, I contribute to characterizing novel traits in cereal crops such as triticale, wheat, and canola developed within our group.

Current research and/or projects

Develop canola plants capable of nitrogen fixation without relying on nitrogen-fixing bacteria.

Professional activities / interests

  • plant hormones
  • seed biology
  • biological nitrogen fixation
  • nitrate sensing and signaling

Education and awards


Ph.D. in Plant Developmental Biology, Wuhan University, China, 2012


  1. 2023, The top 10% most-read papers published in Plant Biotechnology Journal 2022 for Yan, D. et al. (2022) 20: 2135-2148.
  3. 2015-2016, Department of Cell and Systems Biology Postdoctoral Fellowship, awarded to one single postdoctoral fellow in the entire department, Cell and Systems Biology, University of Toronto, Canada.
  4. 2014, Editor-in-Chief’s article for the Sept. issue of Plant and Cell Physiology for the Yan, D. et al. Plant Cell Physiol. (2014) 55: 1521-1533.

International experience and/or work

  • 2016 – 2021        Assistant Project Scientist, University of California, Davis

Key publications


  1. Yan D., Nambara E. (2023) Conserved and unique functions of NIN-like proteins in nitrate sensing and signaling. Plant Science 336, 111842.
  2. Nguyen CH, Yan D., Nambara E. (2023) Persistence of Abscisic Acid Analogs in Plants: Chemical Control of Plant Growth and Physiology. Genes 14 (5), 1078.
  3. Diddi N, Lai L, Nguyen CH, Yan D., Nambara E, Abrams S. (2023). An efficient and scalable synthesis of a persistent abscisic acid analog (+)-tetralone ABA. Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry 21 (14): 3014-3019.
  4. Jiang Zhu, Wen-Shu Wang, Yan D., Li-Wei Hong, Ting-Ting Li, Xiang Gao, Yun-Huang Yang, Feng Ren, Y.T. Lu, T.T. Yuan. (2023). CK2 promotes jasmonic acid signaling response by phosphorylating MYC2 in Arabidopsis, Nucleic Acids Research. 51(2): 619–630.
  5. Yan D., Tajima H., Cline L.C., Fong R.Y., Ottaviani J.I., Shapiro H., and Blumwald E. (2022). Genetic modification of flavone biosynthesis in rice enhances biofilm formation of soil diazotrophic bacteria and biological nitrogen fixation. Plant Biotechnol. J. 20: 2135-2148.
  6. Nambara E, Yan D., Wen J et al (2022) Plant Hormones: Gene Family Organization and Homeolog Interactions of Genes for Gibberellin Metabolism and Signaling in Allotetraploid Brassica napus. Plant Omics: Advances in Big Data Biology.151-171.
  7. Zorraquino V., Toubiana D., Yan D., and Blumwald E. (2018). Draft genome sequence of the nitrogen-fixing endophyte Azoarcus communis SWub3. Microbiol. Resour. Announc. 7: e01080-18.
  8. Duermeyer L., Khodapanahi E., Yan D., Krapp A., Rothstein S.J., and Nambara E. (2018). Regulation of seed dormancy and germination by nitrate. Seed Sci. Res. 28: 150–157.
  9. Phua S.Y., Yan D., Chan K.X., Estavillo G.M., Nambara E., and Pogson B.J. (2018). The arabidopsis SAL1-PAP pathway: A case study for integrating chloroplast retrograde, light and hormonal signaling in modulating plant growth and development? Front. Plant Sci. 9.
  10. Topham A.T., Taylor R.E., Yan  D., Nambara  E., Johnston I.G., and Bassel G.W. (2017). Temperature variability is integrated by a spatially embedded decision-making center to break dormancy in Arabidopsis seeds. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 114: 6629–6634.
  11. Yan D. et al. (2016). NIN-like protein 8 is a master regulator of nitrate-promoted seed germination in Arabidopsis. Nature Communications 7. 13179.
  12. Yan D. Tatematsu K., Nakabayashi K., Endo A., Okamoto M., and Nambara E. (2015). A Comparison of Transcriptomes Between Germinating Seeds and Growing Axillary Buds of Arabidopsis. In Advances in Plant Dormancy (Springer, Cham), 223–233.
  13. Yan D., Duermeyer L., Leoveanu C., and Nambara E. (2014). The functions of the endosperm during seed germination. Plant Cell Physiol. 55.(9): 1521-1533.
  14. Hong L.-W., Yan D., Liu W.-C., Chen H.-G., and Lu Y.T. (2014). TIME FOR COFFEE controls root meristem size by changes in auxin accumulation in Arabidopsis. J. Exp. Bot. 65: 275–286.
  15. Wang J., Yan D., Yuan T.T., Gao X., and Lu Y.T. (2013). A gain-of-function mutation in IAA8 alters Arabidopsis floral organ development by change of jasmonic acid level. Plant Mol. Biol. 82: 71–83.
  16. Yan D., Wang J., Yuan T.T., Hong L.-W., Gao X., and Lu Y.T. (2013). Perturbation of auxin homeostasis by overexpression of wild-type IAA15 results in impaired stem cell differentiation and gravitropism in roots. PLoS One 8: e58103.
  17. HU Y., Liu S., YUAN H., Li J., Yan D., ZHANG J., and Lu Y.T. (2010). Functional comparison of catalase genes in the elimination of photorespiratory H2O2 using promoter‐and 3′‐untranslated region exchange experiments in the Arabidopsis cat2 photorespiratory mutant. Plant. Cell Environ. 33: 1656–1670.
  18. ZHANG J., YUAN L., Shao Y, Du W., Yan D., and Lu Y.T. (2008). The disturbance of small RNA pathways enhanced abscisic acid response and multiple stress responses in Arabidopsis. Plant. Cell Environ. 31: 562–574.
  19. Lu Y.Z., Yan D., and Lu Y.T. (2005). Identification of microRNAs from rice. Funct. plant Biol. 32: 963–971.



Research facility

5403 1st Avenue South
Lethbridge, AB T1J 4B1


Peer review activities:

Acted as a reviewer for The Plant Journal, Front Plant Sci, Plant Science, Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants and Seed Science Research.



Other languages