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24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

Menu Logo Principal Institut Agro Rennes-Angers Angers University   IRHS


SMS - Source and sink Metabolism and Stress responses

Site currently being updated

Crop production is currently undergoing major changes, with new challenges associated with a sustainable vision of agriculture. The agro-ecological transition aims to secure crop production and yield while protecting the environment (biodiversity, reduction of chemical inputs). Thus, new agricultural practices are to be used such as advantageous combinations of species and/or varieties, or crops that are more resilient to environmental constraints related to climate change and sustainable development. This implies identifying adapted traits at different scales (metabolism to architecture) so as to avoid or decrease chemical inputs and coping with new biotic and abiotic environmental features. This encompasses new methods to keep seed quality and protection high without pesticides. Addressing these challenges involves a multi-level strategy, ranging from biochemical aspects (metabolism optimisation) to field plot design. In fact, to provide keys to select the most resilient varieties adapted to new practices, determine the best technical itineraries (e.g. fertilization) or choose the best servicing plants (most advantageous species associations), it is essential to link agro-ecological traits to their molecular context.

The team SMS (IRHS, Angers) brings together geneticists, physiologists and biochemists, providing an specific range of skills (QTL and GWAS analyses, metabolomics, fluxomics, fluorescent microscopy, ROS metabolism, nitrate assimilation and signaling, mitochondrial biology and energy metabolism) and involves multidisciplinary and multiscale approaches to disentangle mechanisms of seedling emergence and plant establishment under environmental constraints. Key physiological actors and genetic determinants of seedling development and vigour are searched by exploring genetic diversity and functional genomics (from transcriptomics to fluxomics). Environmental factors considered encompass temperature, soil water content, nitrogen availability, and microorganisms such as seed pathogens, seedling rhizosphere and microbiotes. The main plant models are Legumes and Arabidopsis. Considering the skills of SMS members, special emphasis is given on metabolism. The ultimate aim is to find avenues to improve seedling performance that can be implemented by professional agricultural actors.

 Our strategy is based on four research axes :

Seed and seedling beneficial functional traits and associated loci

Seed and seedling beneficial functional traits and associated loci

Better understand mechanisms of seed quality and seedling resilience using multiscale approaches, from biometrics to metabolome and genetic diversity
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Nitrate perception & Signalling

Nitrate perception & Signalling

Deciphering nitrate signaling pathways involved the control of primary root growth and plant-microorganism interaction in Medicago truncatula
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Metabolism and performance of seedlings in interaction with biotic environment

Metabolism and performance of seedlings in interaction with biotic environment

Understand how plant metabolism, in interaction with biotic environment (pathogens and beneficial microbiota) and nitrogen nutrition, influences the...
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Seed and seedling mitchondrial Biology

Seed and seedling mitchondrial Biology

Better understand the mechanisms by which mitochondria contribute to extreme stress tolerance in seeds and seedlings
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