We propose to establish an international cooperation network aiming at the application of cutting-edge genomics technologies in biodiversity and ecosystems research. The network will be initiated through the organisation of a workshop to be scheduled in August 2005. The network will be established between European researchers and partner institutions in third countries. These high-throughput analytical genomic tools have so far extensively been used to study developmental and physiological processes in bacteria, unicellular eukaryotes animal model systems, human, and higher plants. A new field employing functional The understanding of ecosystems requires a careful survey not only of abiotic factors of the environment, but also biotic factors contributing to the performance and development of organisms in a certain environment. In biodiversity and ecological research, many data have been acquired from field observations and experiments to describe phenomena and characteristics of defined ecosystems including their inhabitants. The next, essential step for a better understanding of terrestrial biodiversity, genetic resources and ecosystem structures and dynamics will be the integration of functional genomics to allow a more complete The consortium will establish a new scientific platform to discuss potential applications of cutting-edge genomics tools for highthroughput and multiparallel analysis in biodiversity research. Partners from two research fields will be assembled: (a) those that are experts in biodiversity and ecosystems research; and (b) those that have a strong knowledge base in the field of genomics research.
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