West Virginia State University (WVSU) will host a special seminar led by the director of the Michigan State University (MSU) Department of Energy Plant Research Laboratory Friday, Nov. 18, at noon.

Professor Christoph Benning will be discussing “Greasing photosynthesis: From membranes to lipid droplets” in the Hamblin Hall auditorium on the school’s Institute campus. The seminar is free and open to the public.

Benning will also discuss STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students.

Research in Benning’s laboratory focuses on lipid metabolism in photosynthetic organisms. One area of particular interest is the assembly and maintenance of photosynthetic membranes in plants and algae.

Benning earned his doctorate degree from MSU and his master’s degree from the Albert-Ludwigs Universitaet in Freiburg, Germany.

Friday’s seminar is organized by the WVSU Energy and Environmental Science Institute and the WVSU Department of Biology.

WVSU launched the Energy and Environmental Science Institute in 2014 with the mission of enhancing the University’s capacity to participate in evolving opportunities in energy and environmental research, teaching and outreach.