Joint Calls

The virtual seed (vSEED): Combined mathematical, engineering and post-genomics comparative biology to model the systems biology of seed dormancy, after-ripening and germination

  • Acronym vSEED
  • Duration 3 years
  • Project leader Michael Holdsworth, University of Nottingham, UK
  • Other project participants Gerhard Leubner, Albert-Ludwigs-University Freiburg, Germany
    Thomas Speck, Albert-Ludwigs-University Freiburg, Germany
    Leonie Bentsink, Utrecht University, The Netherlands
    Sjef Smeekens, Utrecht University, The Netherlands
    Paul Knox, University of Leeds, UK
    Nicola Everitt, University of Nottingham, UK
    John King, University of Nottingham, UK
    Andy Wood, University of Nottingham, UK
  • Funding The German Research Foundation (DFG), Germany
    Netherlands Genomics Initiative / Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NGI/NWO), The Netherlands
    Biotechnological and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), UK
  • Total Granted budget € 1,709,497


The aim of the vSEED project is to provide a dynamic mathematical description of seed dormancy, after-ripening and germination focussing on the key seed compartments the radicle and endosperm. This interdisciplinary project will analyse the comparative biology of the closely related Brassicaceae species Arabidopsis thaliana and Lepidium sativum, using engineering, imaging, modelling and post-genomics approaches to develop a virtual germinating seed. We propose that germination is an ideal exemplary subject for the integration of new technologies and for developing molecular plant biomechanics in conjunction with dynamic mathematical modelling.

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