Research

Plants are fascinating and we celebrate them by promoting the latest state-of-the-art research and breakthroughs in the plant science and exploring new applications plant science can offer.

 

Join us in this journey and find out more!

EMPHASIS

The European Infrastructure for Multi-scale Plant Phenomics and Simulation


Integrated plant phenotyping infrastructure for the Improvement of plant performance under different climate conditions.

 

Plants are the basis of all food, feed and renewable bioenergy production and are essential for transfer from a fossil fuel-based economy to a bioeconomy. A major challenge for food production in the coming decades is the difficulty of expanding agricultural land. This is complemented by climate change and the increase in world population. This complex system of challenges raises the need to accelerate research to improve yield-potential and adaptation to stressful environments.

 

Plant phenotyping offers innovative tools to face these challenges. Plant phenotyping is an emerging discipline that provide the technology to analyze the interaction among plant genotypes, phenotypes and environment which determining the plant performance under different climate conditions.

 

Improvement of plant performance under changing climates requires the use of different categories of installations in field and platforms, which need to be combined with a coordinated infrastructure for storing. For this purpose, the European Infrastructure for Multi-scale Plant Phenomics and Simulation (EMPHASIS) aims at developing  an integrated pan-European infrastructure of instrumented phenotyping facilities available to the user community and able to quantitatively test plant performance under current and future agro-climatic scenarios.

 

Preparatory project (2017 – 2021): BE, DE, FR, IT, NL, UK

Implementation phase (2021 onwards): BE, CH, DE, EE, FR, Israel, IT,  NL, PT, RS, UK “open for further countries to join”

 

EMPHASIS on social media:


Duration: 01/01/2017 - 31/12/2020


Contact: Ulrich Schurr, [email protected]. EMPHASIS

Contact: Coordination Office, [email protected].

CHIC

Chicory as a multipurpose crop for dietary fibre and medicinal terpenes


CHIC is a research and innovation project supported through the EU Horizon 2020 funding programme.

The €7.3 million projects support the establishment of a responsible innovation pathway for the development and application of New Plant Breeding Techniques (NPBTs) for chicory as a multipurpose crop to produce high-value consumer products, in line with societal needs and concerns. The project consortium is composed of SMEs, an industrial partner, non-profit organizations, and research institutes from 11 European countries and one from New Zealand.

 

The CHIC project aims to develop chicory varieties to produce dietary fibre with enhanced prebiotic effects to promote gut health. Given the chicory’s biosynthetic capacity, high yields, and low agronomic requirements, it has significant potential as a versatile production host in molecular farming that can ideally produce many additional health-related products with benefits to consumers. CHIC’s potential also aims to extract other types of health-related compounds (such as terpenes) as potential lead molecules for drug development.

 

CHIC explores the interactions between technological potential and societal acceptance of modern plant breeding. By developing and implementing a set of new plant breeding technologies, CHIC will adapt the biosynthesis and architecture of root chicory, which will strengthen its production system for high-quality dietary fibres and establish it as a source of bioactive terpenes.

 

The consortium will evaluate the technological performance of these new plant breeding technologies, including the safety, environmental, regulatory, socio-economic, and broader societal issues associated with them.

 

CHIC will ensure responsible innovation and raise public awareness by involving all stakeholders and considering their needs and concerns in all aspects of the project.

 

Check out published scientific publications at http://chicproject.eu/scientific-publications/

 

For example:

PLANT BIOTECHNOLOGY JOURNAL – OPEN ACCESS

Inactivation of the germacrene A synthase genes by CRISPR/Cas9 eliminates the biosynthesis of sesquiterpene lactones in Cichorium intybus L.

Authors: Katarina Cankar, Paul Bundock, Robert Sevenier, Suvi T. Häkkinen, Johanna Christina Hakkert, Jules Beekwilder, Ingrid M. van der Meer, Michiel de Both, Dirk Bosch

 

CHIC Project Social Media Platforms

  • Twitter: https://twitter.com/H2020_CHIC
  • LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/h2020-chicproject/
  • Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/H2020.CHICproject/
  • Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/h2020.chicproject/
  • YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdEvOAEO_sWd3i1SyGF5nCw

Duration: 01/01/2018 - 31/12/2022


Contact: Dirk Bosch, [email protected]. https://www.wur.nl/

InnCoCells

Innovative high-value cosmetic products from plants and plant cells


The EU-funded InnCoCells project will develop sustainable plant-based production processes for the commercial exploitation of scientifically validated cosmetic ingredients based on underutilised plant resources. Consortium members will use cell cultures, hairy roots, aeroponics and greenhouse/field cultivation, applying metabolic engineering tools to optimise growth conditions and the yields of valuable bioactive, small-molecule compounds and ingredients. The optimised processes will be demonstrated through pilot-scale production and subsequent product extraction/purification to bring at least 10 cosmetic ingredients to the pre-commercial stage. The ingredients and extracts will be evaluated using a unique group of innovative enzyme-based and cell-based assays to ensure safety and validate claimed activities based on robust scientific data without the need for animal testing, and the most promising candidates will be tested on human volunteers.

 

Countries where partners are based: Finland, Luxembourg, Belgium, Italy, Germany, France, Latvia, Austria, Bulgaria, Norway, UK


Duration: 01/05/2021 - 30/04/2025


Contact: Dr Kirsi-Marja Oksman-Caldentey, [email protected]. https://www.vttresearch.com/en