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Plant Epigenetics: From Genotype to Phenotype

15th February 2016 - 19th February 2016
Taos, United States


The modification of chromatin, including DNA and histones, allows for the manifestation of multiple phenotypes from the same DNA sequence. In this way, chromatin modifications contribute to variation at multiple levels, ranging from the expression of individual genes, to the differentiation of cell types, to population-level phenotypic diversity. As sessile organisms, plants also integrate a myriad of environmental cues into different phenotypic or growth responses via the epigenome. Technological advances have facilitated the study of the epigenome in unprecedented detail. This meeting will focus on recent breakthroughs in our mechanistic understanding of how epigenetic modifications shape the expression of genotype into phenotype in plants. Topics include the deposition/removal of chromatin modifications and histone variants, the role of epigenetics in development and response to environmental signals, natural variation and ecology, and applications for epigenetics in crop improvement. Bringing together a diverse group of experts from academia and industry will allow attendees to explore the frontiers of plant epigenetics and forge interdisciplinary collaborations. Given the importance of chromatin modifications in shaping plant development and responses to the environment, unraveling the workings of the epigenome is likely to play a key role in food security in the face of increasing population growth and climate change. 

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