ADAPT includes end-user driven agencies for variety testing and potato trading for the translation of our results to directly reach the most relevant stakeholders and end-users. Gained knowledge will feed into breeding programmes and guide technology development for improved crop management strategies.


Partner 1 - The University of Vienna (UNIVIE)

The University of Vienna is the coordinator of ADAPT.

The Molecular Systems Biology lab, led by Prof. Dr. Wolfram Weckwerth, in the Department of Ecogenomics and Systems Biology is one of the leading groups in plant metabolomics & proteomics/phospho-proteomics and applications in plant stress physiology and agroecology. The Department integrates next generation sequencing with proteomics and metabolomics platforms as well as genome-scale metabolic modelling in model systems as well as plant crop systems. The plant signalling group is led by Dr. Markus Teige, who is coordinator of the ADAPT project and has more than 20 years’ experience in protein kinase and calcium signalling. The Vienna Metabolomics Center (VIME) integrates applied topics from environmental, biotechnological and biomedical research questions with focus on data mining, comprising algorithms for statistical data processing and validation, functional interpretation as well as structural elucidation of unknown metabolites and metabolomics/life sciences databases.


Partner 2 - Rheinische FriedrichWilhelmsUniversität Bonn (UBO)

The University of Bonn (UB) is leader of WP4.

The Plant Cell Biology group, led by Prof. Dr. Ute C. Vothknecht, at the Institute of Cellular and Molecular Plant Biology (IZMB) coordinates the development of molecular tools for live cell imaging of stress signalling responses in potato (WP4). The group hosts state-of-the-art Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy, Ca2+ and ROS Imaging Platforms required for real-time, in vivo analysis of stress signalling. In WP2 and WP5, UBO will incorporate knowledge on signalling molecule measurements and signalling networks. UBO will also contribute to dissemination tasks in WP7 making use of long-time expertise and the special UN city environment of Bonn.


Partner 3 - Utrecht University (UU)

Utrecht University (UU) will lead work package 2.

The main experimental work on waterlogging stress and related molecular, biochemical and physiological experiments will be executed by Dr. Rashmi Sasidharan’s research group. Her group is part of the Institute of Environmental Biology, which houses the UU phytotron comprising greenhouse and climate-controlled plant growth facilities. UU also houses the Netherlands Plant Ecophenotyping Centre (NPEC), a national research facility for high-throughput plant phenotyping. In addition, access to the UU bioinformatics, sequencing and microscopy facilities will enable other tasks related to transcriptomics and use of the transgenic sensor lines.

Partner 4 - Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU)

The Division of Biochemistry is part at the Department of Biology, led by PD Dr. Sophia Sonnewald, and focuses on the analysis of molecular mechanisms and signal transduction pathways underlying the regulation of primary metabolism and cellular communication in plants. Biotechnological approaches to optimize crop plants are followed, mainly in potato and cassava. With multiple-layered approaches we have been able to confront complex biological concepts such as sink-source processes, starch metabolism, plant cell substructure, and plant responses to environmental factors. In Adapt, FAU is involved in WP1, WP2 & WP3 on physiological profiling and in biochemical and molecular analysis of stress-responses providing data for modelling (WP5). FAU contributes to generation of reporter lines for W4 and will perform a detailed molecular analysis of transgenic potato plants altered in tuberisation or stress-responsive pathways.

Partner 5 - The James Hutton Institute (HUTTON)

The James Hutton Institute (HUTTON) will be involved in WP2, which will require HUTTON’s resources for controlled environment plant growth experiments and phenotyping expertise. This part is led by Dr. Mark Taylor. This task will also require NGS sequencing facilities, SNP analysis and associated bioinformatic platforms. In WP3 HUTTON will deploy its expertise and facilities for molecular physiology in potato. HUTTON will also contribute to dissemination tasks in WP6 where the HUTTON team has significant expertise and back up from its communications team.

Partner 6 - Durham University (UDUR)

The laboratory of Prof. Marc Knight at Durham University (UDUR) will be involved mainly in WP4 for experimental work characterising early signalling events such as changes in second messengers and subsequent gene expression using a variety of imaging and report systems. This team has 30 years’ experience in measuring early signalling in response to abiotic and biotic stresses.  UDUR will also be involved the incorporation of signalling network information into modelling in WP5 and will also be involved in public outreach events in the UK and Europe as part of WP6. The Durham Centre for Crop Improvement Technology (DCCIT), comprising 14 research groups working across all aspects of plant and crop biology.


Partner 7 - Wageningen University & Research

The Laboratory of Plant Breeding (WU), led by Dr. Christian Bachem at the Wageningen University is primarily involved in WP1 on the high-resolution phenotyping of the genotypes both in the field and in specialised phenotyping greenhouses. WU will be providing a large amount sequence data on both tetraploid and diploid genotypes and be providing some capacity for bioinformatic analysis. In WP3 WU will be involved in following leads from recent research into the involvement of genes involved in tuber initiation and development that are under environmental and abiotic stress control.

Partner 8 - Palacký University Olomouc (UP)

The Laboratory of Growth Regulators (LGR), led by Prof. Ing. Miroslav Strnad, at the Palacký University Olomouc focuses on scientific research and teaching in the field of experimental biology, especially in the preparation of new, purine-based growth regulators with potent biological activities, the development of relevant analytical methods, the study of the functions and effects on growth and developmental process. LGR is an international leading centre for hormone analytics with a special focus on stress phytohormones and tissue- and cell-specific analysis in minute amount of tissues. It will be responsible for all hormone analysis to be done on samples from WP2, WP3, W4, and WP6 using its high-throughput analysis platforms. Additional unbiased metabolomics (sugars, amino acids, secondary metabolites) analyses will be carried out in the cotext of WP2, WP3, and WP5. Together with PSI PU will perform correlation of metabolite levels measured by Mass Spectrommetry (MS)-based approaches with data obtained by different photometric techniques used in High-Throughput-Phenotyping.

Partner 9 - Center for Research in Agricultural Genomics (CRAG)

The Center for Research in Agricultural Genomics (CRAG), led by Prof. Salomé Prat, is an independent and self-managed research Institution; a Center of Excellence created as a consortium by the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), the Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology (IRTA), the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB), and the University of Barcelona (UB). Together with the James Hutton Institute, CRAG CRAG will lead WP3 on tuberisation signalling. Expertise in the DAP-sequencing and transient transactivation methodologies will be used to identify and validate the downstream targets of the CDF1 and TAC transcriptional regulators. The CRAG will also assist in the sampling of field trials in Valencia (WP1), by providing the logistics for RNA preservation and freezing of materials.

Partner 10 – The National Institute of Biology (NIB)

The National Institute of Biology is leader of the working package 5. Prof. dr. Kristina Gruden is the leader of participating group working within Department of Biotechnology and Systems Biology. Their research focus is potato and mechanistics of responses in stress signaling. Their strenghts are gene expression quantification, development of applications for data analysis and interpretation and translation of knowledge from model species to agricultural plants. For generation of biological hypotheses they develop different mathematical models of studied systems. Different aspect of synthetic biology implemented in the groups assist in validation of hypotheses. The Department is also an active member in EU Infrastructures for Systems Biology (ISBE) and Bioinformatics (ELIXIR). In WP2 NIB will be involved in transcriptomics analysis of collected samples and development of ATAC-Seq for potato. In WP4 NIB will contribute some sensor lines for analysis of fast responses and in WP5 in translation of prior knowledge from studies on model species to potato, approaches for data integration and several data modelling approaches. NIB will also take over role of project data management coordinator.


Partner 11 - HZPC Research BV (HZPC)

HZPC Research BV is a Dutch Potato Breeder, with Robert Graveland as director of HZPC research.

HZPC is a leader in creating, testing, producing, marketing and selling potato varieties worldwide. HZPC maintains a very dense worldwide field trial network where we try to expose our germplasm to most existing climates, especially in Europe. An increasing importanceof the breeding lies on abiotic stress tolerance, in order to generate, together with durable pathogen resistance, sustainable varieties. Mainly, abiotic stress research focusses on heat tolerance in Spain, drought tolerance in France and salt tolerance in Egypt. Together with the other breeders involved in the ADAPT project, HZPC will propose varieties or clones to be tested in WP1, and contribute to seed availability along the duration of the project.HZPC will present how the research results of the project ADAPT are in line with the breeding strategy of the company during field days in the Netherlands (WP6).

Partner 12 - C. Meijer B.V. (Meijer)                

C. Meijer potato B.V., with Guus Heselmans for manager reaserch and development, is a leading family-owned potato breeding company founded in 1920. The main focus of the company is to create and market new varieties. Meijer will be involved in designing, carrying out and analysing field trials (WP1), which also includes the possibility to carry out DNA related tasks and bio-informatics. Additionally, Meijer will present their involvement in the project to their stakeholders during a field day (WP6).

Partner 13 - Solana Research GmbH (SOL)                

Solana Research GmbH stands for breeding research and biotechnological services. It is an independent company within the Solana Group, a family-owned potato breeding company. Solana Research provides several laboratory services including variety maintenance through biotechnological in vitro methods, quality management with extensive field and lab tests, phytopathology and molecular marker applications. About 20 years of genomics research in various joint projects with partners from industry and sciences led to substantial R&D knowledge in the field of gene technological methods and molecular marker technologies. Solana Research will contribute to generate transgenic potato lines for WP3 as well as reporter lines for W4 and will analyse transformed potato plants in the greenhouse.

Partner 14 - Niederösterreichische Saatbaugenossenschaft (NOES)

The seed-producing co-operative of Lower Austria (NOES), with DI Susanne Kirchmaier responsible for breeding, conducts field trials based on conventional breeding methods, as well as field trials specifically designed for breeding potato varieties resistant to common pathogens. The NOES maintains multiple field trial sites with climatic conditions typical for Austrian potato farming regions. Currently, 263 active members (farmers) produce seed potatoes for the NOES. With close ties to the end user, i.e. the potato farmer community, NOES will grow selected potato varieties from the project under local conditions, both conventionally and organically, to devise recommendations on management strategies regarding abiotic-stress resistant potato crops (WP6).

Partner 15 - Photon Systems Instruments (PSI)

PSI (Photon Systems Instruments), with Klára Panazarova as contact person, is a high-tech company located close to the industrial city of Brno, specialized in the design of sophisticated, high-end instrumentation for photosynthesis research. The instrumentation we have developed is used for monitoring a wide range of physiological signals from individual cells to mature crop plants. The main product lines are: (1) devices for chlorophyll fluorescence measuring and advanced imaging; (2) high-tech photobioreactors and other algal cultivators; (3) intelligent growth chambers; (4) customized PlantScreenTM Phenotyping Systems and (5) wide range of hand-held instrumentation. PSI will be involved mainly in WP2 as an expert in phenotyping and large-scale analysis of plant physiological parameters and plant performances. PSI will be responsible for screening morpho-physiological traits related to adaptive responses of potato plants to single and combined stresses genes by using high-throughput infrastructure installed in PSI Research Center.

Partner 16 - European Potato Trade Association (EUROPATAT)

EUROPATAT is the European Potato Trade Association (Berta Redondo Benito), an international non-profit association that represents national associations and individual companies involved in the trade of seed, ware and early potatoes throughout Europe. Among its activities, Europatat monitors ongoing and potential upcoming policy dossiers within the areas of interest for its members (agriculture, plant health and food safety, promotion and consumption, trade, sustainability and R&I), and collects data and expertise on these topics. Europatat also facilitates the exchange of information and opinions within its members in order to adopt common positions to defend the sector. Europatat will be mainly involved in WP6 “Pathways to Impact” – Exploitation and Dissemination of Results. In this context, Europatat will focus on the dissemination of the project objectives and results via its well-established internal and external communication channels.

Partner 17 -Austrian Agency for Health and Food Safety (AGES)

The Austrian Agency for Health and Food Safety (AGES), with Alexandra Ribarits as senior expert, leads working package 6 – pathways to impact. AGES is a company of the Republic of Austria, owned by the Austrian Federal Ministry of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection and the Austrian Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Regions and Tourism. AGES supports the management of the federal ministries and the two federal offices subordinated to it in questions relating to public health, animal health, food safety, medical and drug safety, food security and consumer protection along the food chain by providing professional and independent scientific expertise. The Division for Food Security is responsible for testing DUS (Distinctness, Uniformity and Stability) and VCU (Examination of Value for Cultivation and Use) of plant varieties of agricultural species, and provides these services on behalf of the Federal Office for Food Safety (BAES). AGES is an official Examination Office for potato entrusted by the Community Plant Variety Office (CPVO).