Other EU Funded Projects

COST Action CA19125 - EPIgenetic mechanisms of Crop Adaptation To Climate cHange (acronym: EPI-CATCH)

The ultimate objective of this proposed COST action is to define, develop, generate and share new breaking knowledge and methodologies for the investigation of epigenetic mechanisms modulating plant adaptation to environmental stresses driven by climate change. So far, no international network has been created with the aim of standardizing methodology in plant epigenetics/epigenomics and better integrate these data with other “omic” approaches. EPI-CATCH will create a pan-European framework for networking in this under-investigated research field. This COST Action will use a unique cross-disciplinary approach that brings together industrial developers, molecular geneticists, molecular biologists, crop breeders, agronomists, plant pathologists, and bioinformaticians. EPI-CATCH will explore new frontiers on both innovative and translational research targeting the new challenges in plant epigenetics. Four main specific objectives will be addressed by four working groups : 1) update of the most recent findings in crop epigenomics related to climate change, 2) development of new concepts and approaches in crop epigenetics and epigenomics that can be transferable in other living organisms, 3) establishment of common standardized pipelines, methods and workflows for generation, analysis and interpretation of epigenetic/epigenomic data, 4) an intense output dissemination and training for early-career scientists. The methodologies, concepts and ideas developed by EPI-CATCH will assist stakeholders to develop future innovative technologies to enhance environmental sustainability of agriculture in a rapid climate change scenario.

National delegate: Ing. Veronika Lancíková, PhD. (2020 – 2024)


COST Action CA18201- An integrated approach to conservation of threatened plants for the 21st Century (acronym: ConservePlants)

The overarching aim of this Action is to improve plant conservation in Europe through the establishment of a network of scientists and other stakeholders who deal with different aspects of plant conservation, from plant taxonomy, ecology, conservation genetics, conservation physiology and reproductive biology to protected area's managers. The aim of research group at IPGB PSBC SAS is the study of somatic embryogenesis, including initiation of the process, maturation as well as plantlet regeneration in Pinus nigra, Abies alba and Abies hybrids. The study will be focused on physiological, biochemical as well as structural aspects, important for understanding of the mechanism underlying somatic embryogenesis. For cryopreservation of embryogenic tissue the slow-freezing method, suitable for unorganised cell and tissue cultures, will be used.

 National delegate: RNDr. Terézia Salaj, DrSc. (2019 – 2023)


COST Action CA18101 - SOURDOugh biotechnology network towards novel, healthier and sustainable food and bioprocesses (acronym: SOURDOMICS)

Traditional sourdough bread resorts to spontaneous fermentations leading to natural selections of microorganisms, mainly yeasts and lactic acid bacteria. Such microorganisms are essentially beneficial to humans and, concomitantly, inhibits propagation of undesirable microbiota. Sourdough fermentation was probably one of the first microbial processes employed by Man for food production and preservation. Sourdough bread stills widely manufactured at farm level across Europe and worldwide and is highly appreciated by consumers for its distinct flavour, texture and healthy attributes. Through a bottom-up approach, this COST Action network brings together a multidisciplinary group of scientists and SMEs/LEs dedicated for many decades to study cereals and sourdough technologies. In upstream, it aims at exploitation autochthonous (pseudo)cereals with good baking, nutritional and healthy attributes, while promoting a sustainable agriculture and preserving genetic diversity. Simultaneously, aims at contributing to develop new business opportunities to local farmers through their engagement into food processing with shared small-scale breadmaking facilities, and the integration into industrial and trade chains. Such features are in agreement with European Agenda for Food and Environment. In downstream, the biotechnological sourdough fermentation exploitation comprises several objectives: design starter cultures with a wide range of biotechnological applications; production of healthy and tasty varieties of bread, thus catalysing changes in consumers' diets and market orientations; production of high-added value metabolites resorting to sourdough microbiota; and valorisation of by-products from cereal production and sourdough technologies.

National delegate: Ing. Andrea Hricová, PhD. (2019 - 2023)


 COST Action CA18111 - Genome editing in plants - a technology with transformative potential (acronym: PlantEd)

A great challenge of this century is to provide adequate nutrition for an increasing global population while developing a more socially, economically and environmentally sustainable agriculture that counters climate change, biodiversity loss and degradation of arable land. Plant research and breeding are very important in meeting this challenge. Building on scientific progress, a number of genome editing techniques have been developed over the past two decades allowing an unprecedented level of precision in our control over genetic material and its corresponding traits. This COST Action will bring together expertise from a range of disciplines to evaluate plant genome editing techniques and their resulting products from various perspectives. The findings will serve to design a roadmap for directing and facilitating applications of genome editing in plant research and breeding, which in turn will help setting R&D priorities and stimulating further cross-national and cross-disciplinary collaborations.

National delegate: Ing. Martin Jopčík, PhD. (2019 - 2023)