Main research areas of  the PhD

The unifying element of the PhDs is the cultivated plant, for both agricultural and forestry aims. The scale of the research goes from the cell to the ecosystem, following three main approaches:

  1. Agrobiotechnologies: Plant genetics and breeding, genomics and proteomics of processes involved in the regulation of cell cycle, reproductive systems, seed development and fruit maturation/ripening. Selection and genetic improvement of microorganisms for the conversion of residual biomass into high added value products.
  2. Plant-environment interaction: Role of micro-organisms in symbiotic associations with plants, anti-oxydation systems and environmental stress, ecophysiology, plant-insect and plant-pathogen interactions.
  3. Ecosystem management: Human impact on ecological equilibrium, Integrated Pest Management, use of micro-organisms in ecosystem processes, including removal of pollutants, post-harvest management

Research topics

  • Plant genetics, genomics and proteomics
  • Dynamics of epigenetic states
  • Genetic improvement of traits influencing yield
  • Resistance to biotic and abiotic stress
  • Alteration of plant architecture and control of flowering
  • Genetic determinants of apomixis
  • Genetic control of fruit development and ripening
  • Fruit postharvest management and physiology
  • Plant hormone physiology and molecular biology
  • Plant-environment interactions and ecophysiology
  • Microbial conversion of residual biomasses in added value products (i.e. biofuels, bioplastics)
  • Interactions between crop production and agronomic techniques
  • Crop rotation
  • Potential productivity and soil fertility
  • Soil C and P dynamic
  • Root systems and microbial symbionts
  • Ecophysiology and productivity of agricultural and forest plants
  • Biochemical, physiological and molecular responses of plants to pathogens
  • Insect-plant relationships in agricultural and forest ecosystems
  • Biological and integrated control of pests and diseases
  • Ecological and molecular analysis of pests and pathogens
  • Regulation of fruit development and ripening
  • Fruit post-harvest physiology