IBIP seminar – “fruit and seed”

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Translation biology, can we finish the job! Two examples will be discussed sex determination in cucurbits and abiotic stress resistance

Abdel Bendahmane
INRA-IPS2, Paris Saclay

Genetic improvement of crops is strategic for developing more productive and sustainable agricultures. In the post-genomic era, one would expect that the discovery and the optimization of the gene networks controlling key agronomic traits could contribute to this genetic improvement. This will requires fine characterization of agronomic traits, identification of genes involved and engineering leader alleles and subsequent pyramiding to produce highly performing plant prototypes. In this setting, we have investigated the sex determination pathway in cucurbits and discovered major genes that control the sex of the plant. Application in agriculture will be discussed. In another example we investigated complex traits such as abiotic stress. Traditional plant breeding has focused on identification of genes of major effects that give a clear phenotype, such as race-specific disease resistances. For complex traits, such as resistance to combined abiotic stresses, that involve many genes with additive effects, classical breeding methods have showed their limitations. For such complex traits, meticulous phenotyping methods will likely to play a major role. Indeed, a whole area of high-throughput accurate phenotyping is being developed into a highly active research field. One of the axes of research in this field is to develop biosensors as accurate predictors of the plant response to stresses. Application to heat stress will be discussed.

Contact : Antoine Martin

Contacts IBIP :
Sabine Zimmermann
Alexandre Martiniere
Christine Granier
Chantal Baracco