The Graduate School Experimental Plant Sciences (EPS)

Open Competition ENW-XS grant for Melissa Leeggangers

Melissa Leeggangers, postdoc at the plant stress resilience group of Prof. Rashmi Sasidharan, receives the ENW-XS grant for her research proposal. This grant is intended to support promising ideas and to facilitate innovative and more speculative initiatives. The proposed research is ground-breaking and high-risk .

More about the proposal of Leeggangers:

It’s all in the genes: Seed dormancy depth as a predictive indicator for abiotic stress resilience in plants.

With climate change threatening food security, there is a high demand for developing climate-resilient plants. To accelerate this elaborate breeding process, the development of predictive indicators for stress resilience is essential. A potential predictive indicator is the hibernation depth of seeds, which unexpectedly shows a relationship with the level of flooding resilience. In this project, I will explore the relationship between seed hibernation depth and environmental stress resilience, and its potential to become a predictive indicator. When successfully validated and commonly observed between multiple stresses, the road is paved towards developing new strategies to breed climate-resilient plants [NWO].