We invest metalloid- and water efficiency mechanisms in crops
To this aim biochemical functions, transport pathways and regulatory networks of metalloids and water are studied in crops and model plants as well as in heterologous expression systems. A particular focus is on transcriptional, developmental and signaling response reactions to metalloid/water deficiency and metalloid toxicity.
Of central interest are the essential and beneficial plant nutrients boron (B) and silicon (Si), respectively, and the toxic and carcinogenic element arsenic (As).
Our research targets the understanding of the physiology of plants down to the structure and function of genes and proteins as well as relevant mechanisms, which allow optimizing biotechnologically and agriculturally important quality and yield traits and the generation of crops, which are beneficial for the society in terms of food-security (improved plant performance and stress tolerance) and food-safety (generation of healthier food).
To this aim, our Crop Physiology group synergistically bridges classic plant nutritional research with modern molecular biology and exploits the precious genetic diversity of different crop varieties with a particular focus on root traits and root processes.