Stomatal malfunction leads to increased water loss and reduces postharvest keeping quality in plant products. It is induced by growing plants at high relative humidity (RH) and is an intriguing scientific and practical problem in modern horticulture. To reduce energy use in greenhouses, growers often grow plants with closed windows (preventing heat loss), leading to a higher RH and potential postharvest quality problems. It is unknown what causes stomatal malfunction after prolonged exposure to high RH. We will study mapping populations of sensitive and resistant Arabidopsis and Chrysanthemum genotypes to identify the mechanism that leads to stomatal malfunction after long exposure to high RH. The knowledge gained in this project should provide preharvest conditions to grow sensitive cultivars for a good keeping quality in the short term and allow the development for markers to select cultivars with improved stomatal function in the long term.
- Cultivation setup with normal and high humidity
- Stomatal functioning (gas exchange, leaf weighing, microscopy)
- Chlorophyll fluorescence (Fluorcam) measurements
- Quality measurements (Vase Life)
- Expression analysis
- Genetic Screening
- Cloning and plant transformation
Interested in doing a BSc or MSc thesis at HPP? Please contact the HPP student coordinator Katharina Hanika.