The Centre of Excellence in Molecular Biology of Primary Producers is interested in exploring the growth, development and stress and energy metabolism of plants and photosynthesising micro-organisms. It applies the most up-to-date research methods in the field of systems and synthetic biology.
Basic research in this field – and therefore related applied research that promotes bioeconomy – is highly fragmented throughout the world. The consumption of fossil fuels has caused the climate to change, and the continuing growth of the world population requires that food production is stepped up. The European Union has proposed new strategies for the transition to bioeconomy, but the key lies in the limits of primary energy production. It is imperative to increase the ability of plants, algae and cyanobacteria to capture solar energy in a form that is useful to humans as food, fuel and animal fodder.
The aim of the CoE is to find out how photosynthesising organisms integrate the absorption of solar light energy and the consequent carbon metabolism pathways, and to explore opportunities to improve the efficiency of primary production. The photosynthesis researchers and the plant development and stress biology researchers are internationally respected experts in their fields. To date, they have had only limited contact with one another, but the CoE offers a unique opportunity for them to join forces.
Group leaders: Academy Professor Eva-Mari Aro (Leader of the Centre of Excellence, University of Turku),
Jaakko Kangasjärvi (University of Helsinki, Plant Stress Research) , Yrjö Helariutta (Univ. Cambridge/UH, Wood Development Group) and Esa Tyysjärvi (University of Turku).
Molecular Biology of Primary Producers