COST Action 19116
Trace metal metabolism in plants -

                  19116 PLANTMETALS logoCOST logo


Objectives of PLANTMETALS

Research Coordination Objectives

1) Progress in basic science using the synergies of expertise in the network: Determine transport pathways of metals from the soil to and through the plant; understand how plant metalloproteins are functioning; evaluate by which mechanisms metal deficiency and toxicity affect plants and how this is modulated in plant-microbe interactions.
2) Develop/improve methods to achieve the scientific goals, in particular in the fields of analysing metal uptake, localisation and speciation in plants incl. determining optimal preparation methods. We will also set a detailed protocol to determine the metal nutritional status of plants, as well as their bioavailability for plants.
3) Provide knowledge to the agricultural sector regarding localisation and bioavailability of micronutrients in plant products. Make available to farmers the best management practices for micronutrients considering crops, soils and climatic conditions. This includes agronomic approaches for reducing toxic metal accumulation in plants and providing microbial inoculants that enhance micronutrient uptake.
4) Environmental and agricultural risk assessment: Evaluate the relevance of different proposed mechanisms of metal-induced inhibition of plant metabolism under environmentally relevant conditions.
5) Phytoremediation of polluted soils and aquifers. Our action will improve the basis of this technology by revealing physiological and biochemical mechanisms of hyperaccumulation using the synergies of different field of expertise in the network
6) Train researchers from the public and private sectors in metal imaging and speciation methods, particularly in sample preparation, in order to avoid incorrect conclusions from artefactual metal re-distribution or changes in speciation during sample preparation
7) Provide expert advice in forums (pro and contra) dedicated to genetic modification and the use of synthetic biology in agriculture
8) Increase public awareness of the importance of trace metals in biology and their impacts on human nutrition and public health. Help industry with the technical base for the production of micronutrient-based fertilisers and authorities in their regulation

Capacity Building Objectives

1) Bridging the gap between fundamental scientists and the applied (productive, commercial) sector
2) Transferring new technologies for metal studies to the community working on trace metals in plants
3) Generating knowledge and new insights for end users to test micronutrient deficiency in crop plants, fertiliser safety and bioavailability, also in relation to the new EU regulation on fertilisers
4) Characterising and evaluating the role and safety of biological fertilisers, as well as agrochemicals, in micronutrient nutrition of crop plants
5) Developing an EU-wide network of plant metallomics analyses
6) Training of young researchers through mobility promotion in academic and private sectors


designed by Hendrik Küpper, last modified 11 January 2021