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Epigenetic Diversity in Ecology

Objective

Plants are the foundation of all ecosystems and they provide humans with essential services. Unprecedented rates of global environmental change are now putting plants under increased risk, and it is important to understand the capacity of plants to adapt to rapid change. EPIDIVERSE takes a cross-disciplinary approach to investigate the role that epigenetic mechanisms, specifically DNA methylation, play in plant adaptation. Understanding the epigenetic contribution to adaptation will help to predict species responses to global warming and can open new directions for sustainable agriculture and crop breeding. In EPIDIVERSE, a consortium of academic and entrepreneurial PIs will train 15 ESRs to become a first generation of expert eco-epigeneticists, equipping them with the interdisciplinary skills - molecular, (epi)genomic, ecological and bioinformatics - to successfully tackle this new research area. Training in leading academic groups and in life sciences companies will emphasize empirical and informatics skills to become fluent and creative in extracting knowledge from big ‘omics data in natural contexts. In so doing, EPIDIVERSE will ensure the ESRs, and Europe, leading positions in this emerging field. To explain the real-life relevance of epigenetics in natural systems, we will (1) develop genomic and bioinformatics tools for epigenomic analysis in natural settings; (2) determine natural epigenetic diversity, and its relationship with environmental factors, in three common wild species across Europe; and (3) reveal the molecular mechanisms underlying natural epigenetic diversity through controlled experiments. This approach is innovative and timely because it integrates several so far disconnected areas of epigenetic research, and it will transfer analytical methods from laboratory research to the real world. These are important steps forward if Europe wants to understand, manage, and possibly enhance plant adaptability to pressing environmental challenges.

Coordinator

KONINKLIJKE NEDERLANDSE AKADEMIE VAN WETENSCHAPPEN - KNAW

Address

Kloveniersburgwal 29 Het Trippenhuis
1011 Jv Amsterdam

Netherlands

Activity type

Other

EU Contribution

€ 510 748,56

Participants (13)

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PHILIPPS UNIVERSITAET MARBURG

Germany

EU Contribution

€ 498 432,96

EBERHARD KARLS UNIVERSITAET TUEBINGEN

Germany

EU Contribution

€ 249 216,48

BOTANICKY USTAV AV CR, V.V.I.

Czechia

EU Contribution

€ 232 422,48

INSTITUT NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE AGRONOMIQUE

France

EU Contribution

€ 87 625,20

INSTITUT DE RECHERCHE POUR LE DEVELOPPEMENT

France

EU Contribution

€ 262 875,60

ECSEQ BIOINFORMATICS GMBH

Germany

EU Contribution

€ 249 216,48

ECSEQ GMBH

Germany

AGENCIA ESTATAL CONSEJO SUPERIOR DEINVESTIGACIONES CIENTIFICAS

Spain

EU Contribution

€ 247 872,96

IGA TECHNOLOGY SERVICES SRL

Italy

EU Contribution

€ 516 122,64

MARTIN-LUTHER-UNIVERSITAET HALLE-WITTENBERG

Germany

EU Contribution

€ 249 216,48

GREGOR MENDEL INSTITUT FUR MOLEKULARE PFLANZENBIOLOGIE GMBH

Austria

EU Contribution

€ 255 934,08

MAX-PLANCK-GESELLSCHAFT ZUR FORDERUNG DER WISSENSCHAFTEN EV

Germany

EU Contribution

€ 249 216,48

EIDGENOESSISCHES DEPARTEMENT FUER WIRTSCHAFT, BILDUNG UND FORSCHUNG

Switzerland

EU Contribution

€ 175 250,06

Partners (3)

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UNIVERSITAET LEIPZIG

ROCHE DIAGNOSTICS GMBH

WISSENSCHAFT IM DIALOG GGMBH

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 764965

Status

Ongoing project

  • Start date

    1 September 2017

  • End date

    31 August 2021

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.3.1.

  • Overall budget:

    € 3 784 150,46

  • EU contribution

    € 3 784 150,46

Coordinated by:

KONINKLIJKE NEDERLANDSE AKADEMIE VAN WETENSCHAPPEN - KNAW

Netherlands