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Dominique Bergmann uses the development of stomata as a model for the study of cell fate, stem cell self-renewal, and cell polarity in plants. Bergmann’s group uses a variety of genetic, genomic, and imaging techniques to investigate cell development, building a “stomatal toolkit” to examine gene expression in individual cells and to modify the behavior of those cells in an intact and developing organ. Through their studies, the team aims to reveal the diversity of paths nature uses to ensure that cells can renew themselves and create functional final products. The work promises to shed light on how plants achieve their remarkable capacity to reroute development in the face of injury or environmental change.