How different organisms survive in the absence or under very limited amounts of water is still an open question. The aim of the research presented in this thesis is to explore the molecular basis of desiccation tolerance in seeds.
We investigated the possibilities of using germinated desiccation sensitive seeds which were rescued to become tolerant again as a system to study the mechanisms involved in surviving severe dehydration.
Mechanisms of survival in the dry state
Using this experimental approach in combination with technologies to assess which genes, proteins, metabolites and metabolic pathways are important in dry seeds, we obtained insights on the mechanisms of survival in the dry state. The understanding of such mechanisms can aid to the design of crop improvement strategies, long-term storage of seeds, and dry storage of other biological materials such as blood cell, tissues and vaccines.