I obtained a BSc in Biochemistry from The University of Southampton, UK in 2010, with a final year project supervised by Prof. Matthew Terry. The project contributed towards a larger investigation into the regulation of chloroplast biogenesis in etiolated plants.

I then moved on to the University of Bristol, where I studied for a PhD in Biology, supervised by Dr. Kerry Franklin. My thesis focused on the integration of UV-B light signals with other light and temperature pathways.

In 2015 I moved to the Netherlands to begin an EMBO fellowship in the lab of Prof. Ronald Pierik at the Utrecht University. I'm currently studying how soil salinity affects plant competition. The mechanism we have uncovered integrates the ABA, brassinosteroid and light signalling pathways and so will likely have a big impact across multiple disciplines.

Research Areas:
Ecophysiology, Molecular Biology, Signals and Responses


Hayes, S. et al (2017) UV-B Perceived by the UVR8 Photoreceptor Inhibits Plant ThermomorphogenesisCurrent Biology, 27:1-8.

Fraser, D, Hayes, S. & Franklin, K (2016) Photoreceptor crosstalk in shade avoidance.Current Opinion in Plant Biology, 33:1–7.

Hayes, S. et al (2014) UV-B detected by the UVR8 photoreceptor antagonizes auxin signaling and plant shade avoidancePNAS, 111 (32): 11894-9.

Patel, D. Et al (2013) Temperature-dependent shade avoidance involves the receptor-like kinase ERECTAPlant Journal, 73 (6), 980-92.

Cheminant, M. et al (2011) DELLAs regulate chlorophyll and carotenoid biosynthesis to prevent photooxidative damage during seedling deetiolation in ArabidopsisPlant Cell, 23 (5): 1849-1860.

Volunteer Activities

I have reviewed papers for Plant Physiology, Scientific Reports and Biology and Environment, held public engagement events in Bristol and worked on press releases for the press office there. 

Current Affiliations
Experience & Education