Plants sustain life on earth by converting light energy, water, and CO2 into chemical energy. However, arable land is becoming scarce and resources, including water and fertilisers, are becoming depleted under the effects of global change and an increasing human population. Hence, to develop innovative strategies for sustainable plant production, a fundamental understanding of how plant species adapt to environmental conditions and constraints is needed. The answers to these questions are encoded in the existing natural and artificially induced genetic variation that enables plant species and their associated microbes to colonise almost all terrestrial environments. The aim of this Excellence Initiative is to decode the information that are crucial to resource-efficient plant growth.

To achieve this goal, we will combine the scientific capabilities within the Cologne-Düsseldorf region of the Cluster of Excellence on Plant Sciences (CEPLAS), thereby creating a unique interdisciplinary team of experimental and theoretical biologists. In a unique research and training venture to advance plant and microbial research in an ecological context, CEPLAS will focus internationally renowned expertise from the undefinedUniversities of Cologne and Düsseldorf, the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research (undefinedMPIZ), and the undefinedForschungszentrum Jülich.

Further information on the participating groups at Heinrich Heine University Duesseldorf can be found on the pages of the undefinedCluster of Excellence.

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