H2020 EpiDiverse | Poplar as epigenetics tree model

 · 1 min read


In our European Training Network EpiDiverse the last poplar bud has closed for the year in our common garden experiment and thus the phenotyping season is coming to an end. Two years of budset, herbivory and rust data are under the belt. Also, whole genome bisulfite sequencing data has arrived and Barbara has extensively used the bioinformatics pipeline to derive DMRs and DMPs. We are excited to look at our first intensive analyses winter.

Project Background

EpiDiverse is a European Training Network dedicated to the research on ecological Epigenetics. Our model tree is the pyramid poplar (Populus nigra italica), a clone that has been planted all over the world as a roadside and ornamental tree. Thus this clone experiences a huge range of environments which make it an ideal model to study epigenetics. We have collected cuttings from this tree from Spain to Norway and planted them in our common garden in the Marburg Botanical Garden. EpiDiverse was initiated and is run by Dr. Koen Verhoeven, Dr. Katrin Heer, Prof. Dr. Oliver Bossdorf and myself following the sDiv workshop sEpiDiv organized by Katrin and me. In total 15 PhD students called ESR in such European Training network participate.

Participating group members

  • Barbara Diez-Rodriguez (PhD student)


  • Dr. Katrin Heer (UMR)

Collaboration partners and Institutions

EpiDiverse involves academic research groups, non-profit organizations and industry located in the Netherlands, Germany, France, Spain, Czech Republic, Austria, and Italy.

Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW)

  • Koen Verhoeven

Philipps Universität Marburg

  • Rensing

University of Tuebingen

  • Oliver Bossdorf

Botanicky Ustav

  • Vit Latzel


  • Etienne Bucher


  • David Langenberger


  • Michele Morgante
  • Emanuele de Paoli

Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg

  • Ivo Grosse

Gregor Mendel Institute of Molecular Plant Biology

  • Claude Becker

Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology

  • Detlef Weigel