Facilities are open for access
EPPN offers access to 23 different plant phenotyping facilities to the user community. The access is free of charge for elegible researchers and includes all support needed to perform the experiment. Access is granted on the basis on a simple selection procedure.
Establish your network
The EPPN consortium will organize a range of events to inform about the opportunities of plant phenotyping and to foster the interaction between platform operators, users and developers.
Why do we need plant phenotyping?
Plant derived products are at the center of grand challenges posed by increasing requirements for food, feed and raw materials. Integrating approaches across all scales from molecular to field applications are necessary to develop sustainable plant production with higher yield and using limited resources. While significant progress has been made in molecular and genetic approaches in recent years, the quantitative analysis of plant phenotypes - structure and function of plant - has become the major bottleneck.
Plant phenotyping is an emerging science that links genomics with plant ecophysiology and agronomy. The functional plant body (PHENOTYPE) is formed during plant growth and development from the dynamic interaction between the genetic background (GENOTYPE) and the physical world in which plants develop (ENVIRONMENT). These interactions determine plant performance and productivity measured as accumulated biomass and commercial yield and resource use efficiency.
Improving plant productivity is key to address major economic, ecological and societal challenges. A limited number of crops provides the resource for food and feed; reliable estimates indicate that food supplies need to be increased by quantity (50% by 2050) and quality to meet the increasing nutritional demand of the growing human (and animal) population. At the same time, plants are increasingly utilized as renewable energy source and as raw material for a new a generation of products. Climate change and scarcity of arable land constitute additional challenges for future scenarios of sustainable agricultural production. It is necessary and urgent to increase the impact of plant sciences through practical breeding for varieties with improved performance in agricultural environments.
The understanding of the link between genotype and phenotype is currently hampered by insufficient capacity (both technical and conceptual) of the plant science community to analyze the existing genetic resources for their interaction with the environment. Advances in plant phenotyping are therefore a key factor for success in modern breeding and basic plant research.