Division of Pflanzenphysiologie

Plant Acclimation to Changing Environmental Conditions

We are living in a world with rapidly changing climate conditions. Plants, as sessile organisms, have the ability for an efficient acclimation to environmental changes. However, so far the corresponding mechanisms are hardly understood as they require a wide cellular reorchestration of metabolic and genetic activities. We concentrate on plant acclimation reactions to alterations in light and temperature, as these abiotic factors are much more and much faster variable than all other environmental factors. Moreover, optimal light and temperature conditions have a substantial relevance for yield and quality of agronomical relevant crop plants.

Using Arabidopsis thaliana, we try to decipher the impact of chloroplast located processes on the acclimation properties to environmental low temperatures and high light conditions. In the course of our work, we showed that organell associated processes like nucleotide homeostasis, sugar metabolism and solute transport across the chloroplast envelope are critical for plants to reach optimal acclimation properties.

The work in this research area is funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) in frame of Transregional Research Initiative TRR175 “The Green Hub” (www.tr175.bio.lmu.de) which gives us the opportunity to cooperate tightly with other leading groups from the Ludwig Maximilians-University Munich, the Humboldt-University Berlin and the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Plant Physiology in Golm.

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