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Written by CASPIC webmaster   
Sunday, 18 February 2007 00:00

The scientific and technological objectives of CASPIC are:

  • Use an integrated systems biology approach to understand and exploit plant cell wall texture for the future production of (ligno)cellulosic (nano)materials with unique multifunctional properties.
  • Provide a knowledge platform for future innovation in cell wall-based industrial products, a step toward a knowledge based society.
  • Contribute to a paradigm shift from a reductionist to a systems biology approach for generating innovation in fundamental and applied sciences.
  • Communicate the scientific and technological knowledge/breakthroughs generated in the project to scientific and industrial end-users and the general public.

Specific Objectives

Specific Objectives

Objective 1

  • Development of poplar and Arabidopsis plants with an altered number of active cellulose synthases and an altered cellulose to matrix ratio
  • Development of novel tools for manipulating and monitoring the cellular and mechanical properties of plant cell walls.
  • Analysis of the effect of altering cellulose synthase number and cellulose to matrix ratio on cell wall chemistry
  • Analysis of the effect of altering cellulose synthase number and cellulose to matrix ratio on cell wall texture
  • Analysis of the effect of altering cellulose synthase number and cellulose to matrix ratio on cell wall mechanical properties

Milestones

    • Arabidopsis and poplar plants with modified cellulose synthase complex numbers and cellulose/cell wall matrix ratio
    • Database of chemical-, cellular- and mechanical properties of Arabidopsis and poplar plants with modified cellulose synthase complex numbers and cellulose/cell wall matrix ratio

Objective 2

  • Modify specific genes and hence specific parameters of the geo-model
  • Determine the effect introduced genes have on wall structure, composition, and mechanics
  • Platform from which to modify plant cell wall structure in a targeted fashion for industrial applications

Milestones

  • Theory on the impact of genes in the pectin production pathway on cell wall structure
  • Theory on the impact of cell wall texture on mechanical properties
  • Platform from which to modify poplar cell wall structure in a targeted fashion for pulp, paper and timber industry

Objective 3

  • Iterative experimentation and theory
  • Predict material properties from systems parameters
  • Provide a theory-driven perspective for plant design

Milestones

    • Systems biology of Arabidopsis cell wall
    • Systems biology of Poplar cell wall

Objective 4

  • Communicate the concepts and results of the CASPIC project to the scientific community
  • Communicate the technological breakthroughs and applications of the CASPIC project to the industrial end-users
  • Communicate the CASPIC project and its underlying philosophy to students and the non-scientific community

Milestones

    • Organisation of industrial end-users workshops
    • Organisation of a European workshop on ‘Systems Biology for Plant Design'
    • Establishment of the CASPIC website
Last Updated on Thursday, 27 January 2011 11:14