The shorter public version of the Newsletter is available here.
Please, log in and read the full version available in the Members’ Only section.


Enjoy reading and send us your articles early March for the spring 2022 Newsletter.

The table of content


  • Research Cornucopia

EPSO activities

  • EPSO Plant Science Seminar moves into a second season
  • The Outreach Working Group welcomes your public relations experts
  • Plant Health, a new EPSO Working Group is starting
  • Future Proofed Crops, a new EPSO Working Group plans its first meeting Feb’22
  • Re-thinking the agro-food chains to address the nutritional security goal in Europe
  •  Successful Plant Biology 2021 Congress
  • SusCrop: 9 projects selected within the four ERA-NETs call
  • Prepare interactive events for the Fascination of Plants Day 2022!

Members’ news

  •  Welcome to the University of Bordeaux as new member
  • Welcome to the University of Essex as new member
  • Welcome to the University Politechnica della Marche as new member
  • CHIC– MyCHICFarm, an augmented reality (AR) game
  • InnCoCells: Developing safe and sustainable plant-derived cosmetic ingredients with scientifically proven effects
  • THE 16TH ISBR Symposium – ISBR2022
  • FutureProteins: Coupled agricultural systems for a resilient and sustainable production of high-quality food proteins
  • OrbiPlant® and OrbiLoop®: Vertical indoor farming made by Fraunhofer IME
  • CropBooster-P’s Citizen Jury in favor of New Breeding Technologies
  • COVID-19: New plant produced antibody variants open up promising therapeutic approach

National, European and global funding

  • National Research Funding Opportunities
  • Horizon Europe briefing updated by EPSO

Career opportunities and (postponed) meetings

About EPSO

Contacts: Alexandra Barnoux & Karin Metzlaff, EPSO

EPSO members can enjoy the recordings and use them for future work and to write competitive proposals for European and other funding calls. Recordings of the EPSO sessions at the Plant Biology Europe 2021 conference are now available on the EPSO members only website [link] for three months. The joint conference of EPSO and FESPB was held 28 June to 1 July and offered an exciting programme.

Science themes included for example: Plant performance under abiotic stress (incl. adaptation to climate change), Cell signaling in plants, Plant Metabolism and bioactive compounds (incl. crop improvement for healthy diet), Plants in extreme environments, Plant evolution and development, Trafficking and transport in plants, Chloroplast biology (incl. molecular and cellular organization of the photosynthetic systems), Carbon fixation and productivity, From plant defense to plant immunity, Plant epigenetics, The plant microbiome, Plant nutrition, Translating plant research from lab to field, Genomics and genome editing for crop design.

EPSO was not only involved in the science sessions, but as well in several other sessions we highlight hereafter for you and link the respective recording files:

The two EPSO Young Plant Scientists Awardees, Ann-Katrin Beuel (on applied plant research) and Apolonio Huerta (on fundamental plant research) presented their work (see page 3). In the science and policy session ‘Plant Research – European Green Deal – Global Future’ participants discussed with the panel experts contributions of plant science to the European Green Deal and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the role of the Horizon Europe Research and Innovation Programme (see page 4). The European Commission and EPSO held the session on ‘The ERC – European funding for frontier research in plant’ and the GPC and EPSO organised a workshop on the Nagoya Protocol.


Tu, 29.6.

  • 15:00 – 16:30 Nagoya Protocol panel discussion on access to genetic resources (GPC & EPSO – Nils Stein; parallel)


We, 30.6.


Enjoy the recordings and use them for your future work and to write competitive proposals for European and other funding calls.


Find full information and the YPSA award announcement and the science policy session in the full news item.


Alan, Andrea and Karin


Alan Schulman (EPSO President), Andrea Schubert (Conference organiser), Karin Metzlaff (EPSO Executive Director)


Contacts: Karin Metzlaff, Andrea Schubert

The 8th European-wide seminar of the series supported by the European Plant Science Organisation (EPSO) and aimed at the Plant Science community and its stakeholders.

TTT: The seminar will be held online each third Thursday of the month at three (CET).


On 16th December 2021 at 15:00 (CET) we will present three talks exploring the “Future of Plant Nutrition”


Prof Søren Husted, University of Copenhagen, Denmark:  “Dissecting nutrient key-functionalities in metabolism to identify latent nutritional disorders in crops”


Dr Antoine Martin, BPMP, CNRS, Montpellier, France :   “Genomics of plant nutrition in the context of climate change”


Dr Eva Oburger, Institute of Soil Research, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences – BOKU, Vienna, Austria: “Phytosiderophore release of contrasting barley (Hordeum vulgare) lines grown in Zn and Cu deficient soils”


 The seminars will be hosted on Zoom and last approximately 1.5 hours. Numbers will be limited to 300 attendees and therefore please register early if you would like to join. There will be ample opportunities to ask questions and join the debate. So please join us to support this new and exciting initiative for European Plant Science by following this link just prior to the start of the seminar.


EPSO members register in advance for this meeting:


After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.


In the coming months we will be on the lookout for talented plant scientists among the EPSO membership to present their findings and perspectives to the EPSO seminar series. If we approach you to talk, we hope you will be happy to support the initiative. This is a fantastic opportunity for both eminent world leaders and talented up-and-coming early career researchers to present their research to an international audience and to network with potential collaborators. If you wish to suggest a theme for one of the spring seminars and / or nominate yourself or one of your colleagues to give a seminar, we most welcome your suggestions. Please contact Tim George ([email protected]) to provide your name and potential talk title.


We look forward to seeing you all for the 8th EPSO seminar on the 16th December 2021


Tim George, Alan Schulman and Marie-Theres Hauser

EPSO Plant Science Seminar Series Organising Committee


Click here to read: Full EPSO news item



  • Tim George, Hutton / UK & EPSO Board
  • Alan Schulman, LUKE / FI & EPSO President
  • Emily Breeze, Warwick University / UK & EPSO Representative


Biodiversity is one of the destinations of the Horizon Europe (HE) Work Programmes in cluster 6 ‘Food, Bioeconomy, Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment’ and the focus of the Biodiversity Partnership in HE in order to achieve the European Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 to build the bridge between science, policy and practice.

Biodiversa+ is the co-funded biodiversity partnership under the Horizon Europe programme and was jointly developed by BiodivERsA and the European Commission (DG Environment and DG Research & Innovation). It is one of the HE partnerships to start and was officially launched 1st October 2021. It continues the work of the Biodiversa ERA-NET which was established under Horizon 2020.

Biodiversa+ gathers 75 research programmers and funders and environmental policy actors from 37 European and associated countries to work on five main objectives:

  1. Plan and support research and innovationon biodiversity through a shared strategy, annual joint calls for research projects and capacity building activities
  2. Set up a network of harmonised schemes to improve monitoring of biodiversityand ecosystem services across Europe
  3. Contribute to high-end knowledge for deploying Nature-based Solutions and valuation of biodiversity in the private sector
  4. Ensure efficient science-based support for policymakingand implementation in Europe
  5. Strengthen the relevance and impact of pan-European research on biodiversity in a global context.


Register to the launch event held online on 17-18 November 2021 for Biodiversa+ 2021-2022 joint Call for Transnational Research Proposals on “Supporting the protection of biodiversity and ecosystems across land and sea”.

More details on the call “Supporting the protection of biodiversity and ecosystems across land and sea”.


To know more on biodiversity in Horizon Europe, EPSO invites its members to check the updated EPSO briefing on Horizon Europe Work Programmes 2021-2022 on the Members’ only Website* 29.9.2021.  It contains all information for plant scientists already available in one document. It provides as well additional researched information and final call texts published by the European Commission since 15 June 2021.


 *Access to the Members’ only Website is restricted to EPSO active Members (not sleeping members, not external Personal Members) – please contact Sofia to get access.


Source: Biodiversa, KoWi

EPSO is pleased to announce the start of its new Working Group ‘Future Proofed Crops’. It will focus on adapting our crops to the shifting climate, to improve abiotic stress, photosynthesis and resource use efficiency of crops, and to stably increase crop yield and – via the link to our Nutritional Security WG crop nutritional quality. It encompasses the continuum from basic to applied research.

The first activity planned by the WG will be a (probably online) meeting in February 2022 to discuss the upcoming novel possibilities to future proof our crops.

Pls discuss this in your organisation and reply to Karin, cc Sofia and the chairs to become a member of this WG best by 3rd December (we suggest 1-2 expert scientists per organisation interested in this subject). To enrol an expert, please provide the providing the name, function in the institute, 1-3 keywords on the expertise and contact details.


Interested in the other EPSO WGs?

Discuss in your organisation all EPSO Working Groups (see 2nd attachment) and let Karin know if you want to add expert scientists to the other WGs.

EPSO members start and coordinate EPSO Working Groups to collaborate on science advancement, networking, strategy and provide science advice to policy.

We suggest that 1-2 expert scientists per member organisation join a WG relevant to them.

Membership in EPSO WGs is restricted to experts from EPSO Institutional members. Others can apply to become and observer of a WG


Looking forward to collaborating with you in the FPC WG

Rene, Christine, Andreas, Francesco, Alain and Karin


FPC WG co-chairs: René Klein Lankhorst, Christine Raines, Andreas Weber, Francesco Loreto and Alain Gojon.

EPSO Executive Director: Karin Metzlaff


Click here to read: Full ‘EPSO FPC WG announcement’ and the ‘EPSO Join Working Groups announcement’.



EPSO:    Karin Metzlaff, EPSO Executive Director & Sofia Ciravegna, EPSO Executive Assistant

EPSO FPC WG co-chairs:

  • René Klein Lankhorst (WUR / NL)
  • Christine Raines (Essex / UK)
  • Andreas Weber (HHU / DE)
  • Francesco Loreto (CNR / IT)
  • Alain Gojon (INRAE / FR)

Calls for proposals for Horizon Europe 2022 are open. EPSO encourages its members to apply, especially to calls under the European Research Council (ERC) and Marie Slodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) of Pillar I (Excellent Science), and Cluster 6 ‘Food, bioeconomy, natural resources, agriculture and environment’ of Pillar II (Global Challenges and European Industrial Competitiveness).

EPSO published its updated EPSO briefing on Horizon Europe Work Programmes 2021-2022 on the Members’ only Website* 29.9.2021.  It contains all information for plant scientists already available in one document. It provides you as well additional researched information and final call texts published by the European Commission since 15 June 2021.


 *Access to the Members’ only Website is restricted to EPSO active Members (not sleeping members, not external Personal Members) – please contact Sofia to get access.


Work Programmes covered in the briefing and still open for submission are:


Excellent Science


  • MSCA Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action 2021-2022
    • MSCA-SE-2021: opened on 7.10.2021, closing 9.3.2022
    • MSCA-SE-2022: opening on 6.10.2022, closing 8.3.2023
    • MSCA-COFUND-2021: opened on 12.10.2021, closing 10.2.2022
    • MSCA-COFUND-2022: opening on 11.10.2022, closing 9.2.2023
    • MSCA-PF-2022: opened on 13.4.2021, closing on 14.9.2022
    • MSCA-DN-2021: opened 22.6.2021, closing on 16.11.2021
    • MSCA-DN-2022: opening on 3.5.2022, closing on 15.11.2022



Global Challenges & European Industrial Competitiveness – Thematic clusters


Innovative Europe


Widening Participation and Strengthening the European research Area

 Widening Participation and Strengthening the European Research Area 2021-2022


Further Work Programmes are available on the Funding & Tenders portal


Wishing you success with your proposals

Karin Metzlaff, Alexandra Barnoux and Alan Schulman


Contact: Karin Metzlaff