Arsenic impact on the xero-halophyte chilian plant species "Atriplex atacamensis" : absorption, speciation and accumulation in relation to phytoextraction of toxic compounds in salt-affected polluted areas
In the north part of Chile, the Atacama desert is characterized by high temperature, high salinities, and high As concentration resulting from mining activities. Atriplex atacamensis is a halophyte plant species displaying a fascinating capacity to cope with these multiple constraints. Arsenic absorption and translocation is quantified in relation to management of oxidative stress and synthesis of phytochelatins.
Collaborations: Universidad Arturo Prat – Iquique (Chile), Instituto de Investigaciones Agropecuarias (INIA-La Cruz – Chile), Science Research, Iquique (Chile).
Comparison of physiological impacts of chloride and sulfate salinities limiting rice yield in the lower Rusizi Valley (Burundi)
Sulfate salts are largely present in Burundian rice soils but very little research has been done on their effects on rice plant comparatively to chloride salinity. Our goal is to compare the effects of both salinities on physiological and molecular aspects of plant response. The experimental tests are conducted in a natural environment (Burundi) and in a hydroponic environment (UCL).
|Fig 1. Abandoned rice field due to salinity (Burundi)||Fig 2. Experimentation in greenhouse (Burundi)||Fig 3. Experimentation in phytotrons (UCL/GRPV)|
Collaborations: University of Burundi (Professor Gervais Rufyikiri and Professor Séverin Nijimbere), International Rice Research Institute-East and Southern Africa (IRRI-ESA: Alexis Ndayiragije,PhD.).
Do climate changes affect floral resources (pollen & nectar) of entomophilous species and the relation between plants and pollinators ?
Pollen and nectar are the key players in the relationships between entomophilous plants and pollinators. But heat and water stress in the context of climate changes could affect plant’s life cycle and particularly floral resources. Our aim is to highlight how both quantity and quality of floral resources could affect the relations between the two partners in the climate changes context.
Collaborations : UMons (D. Michez)
Emphasis-Prep: Basis for a pan-European infrastructure for plant phenotyping
EMPHASIS-PREP will provide the basis for the establishment the legal framework, the business plan and preparation of an information system for a sustainable and innovative pan-European infrastructure for plant phenotyping. UCL members are responsible for the mapping of supply and demand of modelling platforms for testing existing or virtual combinations of alleles in a variety of climatic scenarios and management practices.
How to combine yield and quality in common and tartary buckwheat in the context of climate changes?
Buckwheat is an environmentally friendly crop and constitutes a multifood-use pseudocereal with nutritional and health benefits (absence of gluten, high quality proteins, high antioxidant content, etc…). However, various physiological and ecological characteristics result in low and variable yields. Our aims is to highlight how environmental parameters affect buckwheat reproduction and quality in the context of climate changes.
Collaborations: Ivan Kreft (University of Ljubljana, Slovenia), Christian Zewen (Luxemburg).
Impact of salinity on physiological responses of the wetland halophyte plant species "Kosteletzkya pentacarpos" to polymetallic contamination
The research intends to identify the properties allowing the plant species Kosteletzkya pentacarpos to cope with several heavy metals simultaneously present in contaminated sites and to determine the influence of salt on its putative interest for phytoremediation purposes. We perform an interdisciplinary approach using physiological and biochemical tools in relation to mineral nutrition, regulation of water status and synthesis of protecting compounds.
Collaborations: Prof. Dr. Birgit Classen (Université Christian Albrecht de Kiel, CAU, Germany), Prof. Dr. Ruiming Han (Nanjing Normal University, China), Dr. Bruno Godin (Walloon Agricultural Research Centre, Belgium).
Molecular and physiological impacts of high temperatures on root chicory ("Cichorium intybus L. var sativum") in relation with devernalisation and flowering processes
The aim of the project is to study the physiological and molecular impact of high temperature in root chicory (Cichorium intybus L. var sativum). The impact of heat on growth, photosynthetic activity, sugar transport, sugar content and yield in relation to flowering is quantified. The induction of flowering by heat and the resulting flowering development are also studied.
Collaborations: Chicoline, Cosucra-Group Warcoing, 1, rue de la Sucrerie, 7740 Warcoing, Belgium, Prof. Claire. Périlleux, PhytoSYSTEMS, Laboratory of Plant Physiology, University of Liège, Sart Tilman Campus Quartier Vallée 1, Chemin de la Vallée 4, B-4000 Liège, Belgium, Prof. Wim Van den Ende, Head Sugar metabolism group, Molecular Plant Biology, Kasteelpark Arenberg 31 box 2434, 3001 Leuven, Belgium.
NaCl impact on the African species "Oryza glaberrima" Steud : a useful tool for salinity resistance in rice
The classical asian rice (Oryza sativa) is rather sensitive to salinity which greatly hamper rice production in numerous area of the world. The less cultivated Oryza glaberrima was domesticated in Africa and still present some properties allowing some cultivars to cope with high salinity. We are screening a large set of O. glaberrima genotypes in order to identify physiological properties involved in salt resistance.
Collaborations: University of Abomey Calavi, Benin, Africa Rice Center.
Silicon impact on Cd and Zn response in hemp: ion localization in relation to fiber development and phytoremediation purposes
Remediation of soil pollution is a current environmental challenge. The objective is to specify the value of hemp in a strategy of re-functionalization and phytogestion of contaminated soils, to understand the response strategies of this species to toxicity induced by cadmium and zinc, and to clarify the impact of silicon application on the development of commercially valuable products such as fibers.
Collaborations: Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST), University of Ljubljana (Slovenia), Institute Joisef Stefan Ljubljana (Slovenia), Team², Groupe Agriopale, Néo-Eco, Norenvert, EACM (Environnement Aménagement Carrières Matériaux), Chambre Régionale d’Agriculture du Nord – Pas de Calais, Etablissement Public Foncier Nord – Pas de Calais, GRECAT, UMR SAD-APT équipe Proximités INRA AgroParisTech, LGCgE - ISA LILLE.
Cd and Ca distribution in a trichome of a plant exposed to Cd 20µM.Cd and Ca distribution in a trichome of a plant exposed to Cd 20µM.
Uncovering drivers of water flow across roots of cultivated cereals from a multi-level approach
We investigate the impact of root anatomy and aquaporin expression patterns on root radial hydraulic conductivity. The model framework builds connections between experimental observations at different scales and offers an insight into non-measurable quantities such as water flow densities and pathways. It also constitutes an asset for hypothesis testing, highlighting the role of specific components of the hydraulic network, such as plasmodesmata.