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Genetic and molecular priming approaches to increase crop strength and stress tolerance

Objective

The project provides advanced systems biology training for 5 ESRs who will develop novel methods for increasing crop strength and resistance to stress by alternative genetic and genomic, non-GMO, technologies: (1) Selecting allelic variants of a novel gene identified by members of the consortium which regulates oxidative and abiotic stress tolerance and (2) Molecular priming by biostimulants or low doses of H2O2 to induce stress-protective mechanisms in crops. This dual approach will meet the growing EU push towards secure, sustainable and safe means of food production (Dir.2009/128/EC & EU Reg. EC/178/2002). The genetic approaches are combined with high-throughput technologies for transcriptome, metabolome, and phenotypic analyses, combined with advanced bioinformatics. Both approaches to increasing crop yield are growing in importance, with the biostimulants industry expected to reach $2.2B globally by 2018. Equipping ESRs with these skills will enable them to develop their research careers in academia or industry. Training will be conducted at the University of Potsdam (UP, Coordinator), Germany, and two companies: BioAtlantis (BA), Ireland, and Enza Zaden (EZ), The Netherlands. Prof. B. Mueller-Roeber (UP) has extensive research management and teaching experience and will supervise the ESRs as PhD students. BA is internationally recognized for producing innovative biostimulants and has 3 patents filed, while EZ is among the top ten in vegetable breeding worldwide. All partners have experience in coordination and participation in EU FP7 projects. The expected results will increase our understanding of the molecular basis of stress tolerance and provide two alternative strategies for crop improvement and increasing food production. BA and EZ will ensure rapid dissemination of applied research to end users.

Coordinator

UNIVERSITAET POTSDAM

Address

Am Neuen Palais 10
14469 Potsdam

Germany

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 747 649,44

Participants (2)

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ENZA ZADEN RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT BV

Netherlands

EU Contribution

€ 255 374,28

BIOATLANTIS

Ireland

EU Contribution

€ 265 674,60

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 642901

  • Start date

    1 January 2015

  • End date

    31 December 2018

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.3.1.

  • Overall budget:

    € 1 268 698,32

  • EU contribution

    € 1 268 698,32

Coordinated by:

UNIVERSITAET POTSDAM

Germany