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Plant Cytologist

Examine how plant cells look and work.

What does a Plant Cytologist do?

A Plant Cytologist is part Cytologist and part Botanist, studying the structure and function of plant cells. The work you do as a Plant Cytologist is especially beneficial to the study, diagnosis, and treatment of plant diseases, but it can also be used for a variety of purposes, including the discovery and development of new plant species. You will most likely work in a research laboratory, examining cells through the lens of a microscope.

Your daily tasks include splicing cells, placing them on slides, examining them under a microscope, analyzing how certain outside influences affect them, and then carefully documenting your findings and writing reports for your Supervisors. You employ a variety of methods and instruments to do your work, including a technique called staining-where you dye the cells and analyze the color changes-and a tool called a microtome-which allows you to cut cells into thin slices. You work with a team of other Plant Cytologists and Botanists on assigned projects.

Your efforts facilitate the discovery of new plant diseases and, more importantly, their cures. Your encyclopedic knowledge of cell structures, growth, division, and coloring allows you to pinpoint changes, diagnose diseases, and find ways to treat them. But your work also leads to the discovery of new plant species, and of possible methods for improving existing ones. This all results in a much more beautiful, lush, and colorful world.