News 2019

- Thursday, 12 December 2019

Gain and loss of accessory genes accelerates gene sequence divergence and promotes speciation in prokaryotes

A recent study in Nature Communications led by CBGP researcher Dr. Jaime Iranzo compares the tempos of genome evolution through acquisition and loss of accessory genes and through mutations in core genes. Results imply that gene turnover promotes speciation by facilitating the spread of barriers to homologous recombination across the core genome.

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- Tuesday, 10 December 2019

Identification of a specific regulator of protein synthesis in plants

Researchers at the Center for Plant Biotechnology and Genomics (CBGP, UPM-INIA) reveal how plants modulate protein synthesis to adapt it to their living style.

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- Tuesday, 03 December 2019

A step closer to nitrogen-fixing plants

The study shows the power of combining synthetic biology and hard-core biochemistry to engineer a critical step of nitrogenase biosynthesis in yeast..

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- Tuesday, 03 December 2019

Forest Genomics and Biotecnology

This ebook addresses research in genomics and biotechnology to improve the growth and quality of forest trees for wood, pulp, biorefineries and carbon capture.

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- Wednesday, 27 November 2019

Uncover the mechanism by which poplar measures the night hours to determine its annual growth period

Researchers at the Centro de Biotecnología y Genómica de Plantas (CBGP, UPM-INIA) are leading an international study that shows how a circadian clock gene in poplars acts as a molecular sensor to quantify the number of night hours and determine the cessation of autumnal growth.

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- Wednesday, 27 November 2019

Five scientific challenges led by women, L’Oréal-Unesco For Women in Science 2019 award

The challenges of climate change and the protection of biodiversity, the minimization of the impact of plastics in the oceans, the impact of the gender perspective in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases or therapeutic alternatives of different types of cancer have been the five projects awarded.

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- Tuesday, 12 November 2019

The Centro de Biotecnología y Genómica de Plantas (CBGP, UPM-INIA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology (IGDB) of Beijing and the Shanghai Centre for Plant Stress Biology (PSC) to establish a joint international Centre of Excellence on Plant-Environment Interactions

This new International centre will bring together three world-leading plants research institutes to tackle the global challenge of producing enough food for the world population by generating science of excellence and developing technologies for a sustainable agriculture.

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- Monday, 11 November 2019

Dr. Alejandro Couce joins CBGP (UPM-INIA) as Junior Group Leader founded by Severo Ochoa

Dr. Alejandro Couce joins the new CBGP Computational Systems Biology and Genomics program (UPM-INIA) with 6 years of postdoctoral experience in France (Paris, INSERM) and the United Kingdom (London, Imperial College). His work combines experimental evolution methods, computer simulations and genomic analysis to understand the processes and mechanisms that are responsible for the evolution of microbes.

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- Wednesday, 06 November 2019

The structure of Turnip mosaic virus, an important plant virus with a wide host range, has been solved

Plant viruses with an elongated and flexuous architecture are problematic candidates for a detailed structural characterization, since the flexuous nature of their capsids prevents crystallization, and consequently an analysis by X-ray crystallography. However, the latest methodological advances are allowing less-resolving techniques, such as cryo-electron microscopy, to reach resolution parameters almost comparable to the most advanced ones.

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- Monday, 04 November 2019

An Integrative Approach to Analyze Seed Germination in Brassica napus

Farmers require vigorous seeds to ensure the establishment of their crops. Our study have used different integrative approaches to produce a more comprehensive understanding of the regulation of seed germination. We have defined a framework of metabolic, hormonal and transcriptional changes that take place during this process in oilseed rape.

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- Wednesday, 23 October 2019

Chemoperception of specific amino acids controls phytopathogenicity in Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato

There is substantive evidence that chemotaxis, the directional migration of cells in response to chemical gradients, is a key requisite for efficient pathogenesis in plant pathogens, facilitating bacterial entry through stomata and wounds. However, information regarding particular bacterial chemoreceptors and the plant signals that they sense is scarce.

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- Friday, 18 October 2019

Viruses at the interface between wild plants and crops

Inoculum flows between wild reservoirs and crops is assumed to be central for plant virus emergence. This topic is addressed here focussing on the geminiviruses, a major group of emergent viruses. Knowledge of geminivirus infection at the interface between wild and cultivated plants is still far from complete, but allows establishing hypotheses on the conditions for emergence.

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- Friday, 04 October 2019

FAIR - more than a happy feeling!

The FAIR Principles for publishing scientific data say that data should be Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable. Adherence to the FAIR Principles allows machines to correctly identify and reuse data without human intervention. But, how do you know if your data is FAIR? In this publication, we provide the first community-driven, automated evaluations of FAIRness, where a computer will explore your data and provide you a "FAIRness Profile" that helps you to learn what aspects of FAIR are successfully found in your data.

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- Wednesday, 02 October 2019

Identified the factors that determine the seed transmission rate of plant viruses

Dr. Pagán´s group identifies the virus speed of within-host movement and its level of multiplication in the plant reproductive structures as key determinants of seed transmission rate, a central process in the emergence of crop diseases. Using this information the researchers have developed a tool to predict the risk of virus seed transmission.

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- Wednesday, 18 September 2019

TV report on the Center for Plant Biotechnology and Genomics (CBGP, UPM-INIA) in the scientific and dissemination program Lab24 of TVE

The Spanish Television program Lab24 published a report about the research and innovation activities carried out at the CBGP (UPM-INIA), which is one of the Spanish centers with the seal of Excellence Severo Ochoa.

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- Tuesday, 17 September 2019

The Centers and Units of Excellence grouped in SOMMa reiterate in a meeting with representatives of the Governments of the Regional Governments the impact of the Severo Ochoa - María de Maeztu program on the scientific and technological progresses of the spanish research institutions

On Monday, September 9th , there was a meeting between the Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities, senior officials of 15 Regional Governments, and 42 Spanish research institutions of excellence. Six centers and units of excellence “Severo Ochoa - María de Maeztu” show the impact that the program has had for them. “The support of the autonomous communities for research is essential for Spain,” says Luis Serrano, president of the Severo Ochoa - María de Maeztu alliance (SOMMa).

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- Monday, 16 September 2019

Climate change could promote virus dispersal through seeds

CBGP researchers discover that the increase of environmental light intensity, the main consequence of climate change, facilitates virus invasion of the seeds by altering plant defenses. This finding has important implications to understand the long-distance dispersal of plant viruses, a major contributing factor for disease emergence in crops.

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- Monday, 09 September 2019

Dr. Jaime Iranzo is joining the CBGP (UPM-INIA) as a Ramón y Cajal Researcher

Dr. Iranzo joints the new Computational/Systems Biology and Genomics Program of the CBGP (UPM-INIA). Dr. Iranzo has completed a 5-year postdoctoral fellowship at the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) from the National Institute of Health (NIH, USA). His research combines comparative genomics and mathematical modeling to investigate the evolution of microbes and viruses.

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- Monday, 02 September 2019

The CBGP (UPM-INIA) welcomes Dr. Angel Goñi-Moreno as visiting scientist

Dr Goñi-Moreno is a Lecturer in Synthetic Biology at the School of Computing of Newcastle University (UK), and Principal Investigator at the Interdisciplinary Computing and Complex Biosystems (ICOS) research group. He leads a group that carries out research at the interface of computing and biology, both theoretical and experimental.

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- Tuesday, 27 August 2019

VII Bioinformatics Student Symposium

The Centre for Plant Biotechnology and Genomics will host on 17 October 2019 the VII Bioinformatics Student Symposium organized by the Spanish Regional Group of Students (RGS-Spain), a student association on bioinformatics embedded into the International Society for Computational Biology (ISCB).

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- Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Plant defenses against pests driven by a bidirectional promoter

The research team led by Dr.Isabel Diaz has identified and validated the functionality of a bidirectional promoter in the model species Arabidopsis thaliana. This work demonstrates the activation of the promoter after applying different biotic stresses, which suggests a high biotechnological potential in the management of pests and / or pathogens.

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- Thursday, 25 July 2019

European scientists ask the EU Parliament and EU Commission reconsider genome editing for sustainable agriculture and food production

One year ago today, the ECJ unfortunately took a very tough stand on genome editing with its strict legal decision. The European scientific community, representing 126 plant research institutes across Europe, now urges policy makers to reconsider their verdict. In the past year, research has only emphasized the potential of genome editing. As a result, more and more countries across the world are choosing for a rational legislative framework that allows the judicious use of genome editing techniques. Europe cannot stay behind.

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- Wednesday, 17 July 2019

Warm ambient temperature effects on flowering time in Brassica crops

One of the main challenges of our society is to cope with the negative impacts of climate change on agriculture. In a recent study published in The Plant Journal, CBGP researchers characterized the “florigen” activity and the effect of high ambient temperature on flowering time in Brassica rapa.

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- Friday, 12 July 2019

LHY2 Integrates Night-Length Information to Determine Timing of Poplar Photoperiodic Growth

The research team led by Isabel Allona and Mariano Perales, in collaboration with Phil Wigge’s and Katja Jaeger’s teams, described a novel mechanism used by poplar to measure night-length, integrating this information for determining the boundaries of the growing season..

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- Tuesday, 09 July 2019

New multidrug transporter of Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato involved in resistance to plant antimicrobials

Multidrug resistance (MDR) efflux pumps protect bacteria against a wide spectrum of antimicrobial compounds. The number of studies on MDR systems in phytopathogenic bacteria is rather limited, particularly those focusing on plant-defense compounds as potential substrates of the pumps. This work analyzes the role of a new P. syringae MDR system.

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- Friday, 05 July 2019

To increase crop production with fewer fertilizers: The relevance of the phosphate

Phosphate deficiency in soils is one of the major causes of agricultural production losses. Therefore, continuous fertilizers application is required to increase yield, but this excessive use has negative environmental and economic consequences. Thus, crop improvement in phosphate uptake and use is essential to develop sustainable agriculture.

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- Thursday, 27 June 2019

Cucumber mosaic virus as a potential selective pressure on Arabidopsis thaliana populations

It has been proposed that in wild ecosystems viruses are often plant mutualists, whereas agroecosystems favour pathogenicity. We seek evidence for virus pathogenicity in wild ecosystems through the analysis of plant-virus coevolution, which requires a negative effect of infection on the host fitness. Plant-virus coevolution has not been demonstrated yet in any wild system.

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- Monday, 24 June 2019

Synthetic biology techniques to get better and more reproducible transgenic plants

For more than 20 years, plant biologists have tried to achieve complete control of transgene expression. However, until the techniques to target transgenes to safe harbor sites in the genome become routine, we need to find methods to avoid avoid positional effects.

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- Thursday, 13 June 2019

CBGP postdoctoral researchers succeeded at the major European Congress on Allergy and Clinical Immunology by winning two awards

Jaime Tomé Amat and María Garrido Arandia, Postdocs at the Plant Allergens group led by Araceli Díaz Perales, won awards for the best poster presentation and the best poster discussion at the 38th EAACI congress held in Lisbon.

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- Wednesday, 05 June 2019

Plant proteases: from key enzymes in germination to allies for fighting gluten-related disorders

The properties of plant proteases acting along seed germination encouraged us to explore an alternative approach for enzymatic gluten degradation to generate gluten-free wheat for celiac patients. Our results highlight the potential of plant proteases to be used as biotech tools to provide new prevention strategies in protein-caused disorders.

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- Monday, 03 June 2019

More and better genomic information just by changing the polyA

Genes encode all information needed for the correct development and adaptation of organisms to changing environments. This information is transcribed via messenger RNAs to produce proteins. The end of these messengers is delimited by a polyA sequence. This genomic information can be amplified by alternative polyadenylation.

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- Tuesday, 28 May 2019

The mold allergen Alt a 1 is related to asthma vía its interaction with the lung receptor SLC22A17

Alt a 1, mold allergen released from spores of A. alternate, is related to asthma, although the molecular mechanism remains unclear. We described that Alt a 1 binds to SLC22A17, a receptor found in lung epithelium, inducing a pro-inflammatory response. Structural relationship in Alt a 1 and human siderocalin suggests the allergen mimic its pathway.

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- Tuesday, 21 May 2019

CBGP PhD student awarded a double prize in the III Edition of "My thesis in a nutshell" UPM Symposium

Guadalupe Hernández Ramírez, a Predoctoral student at Molecular Basis of Allergenicity and Cross-Reactivity in Plant Food group led by Araceli Díaz Perales won a double prize in the 2019 Edition of “My thesis in a nutshell” Symposium organized by the International Doctorate School of UPM.  

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- Tuesday, 14 May 2019

PlantResponse Biotech, a CBGP spin-off, named Top 50 Agtech companies of 2019 by THRIVE

PlantResponse, a UPM spin-off company founded by CBGP researchers and a CBGP strategic partner, was named one of the 50 best agtech companies in 2019 by SGV Venture-THRIVE, a global AgTech innovation platform based in Silicon Valley, California (USA).

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- Tuesday, 14 May 2019

The Center for Plant Biotechnology and Genomics (CBGP, UPM-INIA) celebrates the 5th International Fascination of Plants Day

The CBGP (UPM-INIA) will open its doors on May 17th to celebrate this day and to present its novel outreach and educative program “Food4All (F4A): Plant to reach the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG-2030)”.

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- Monday, 13 May 2019

The endophytic fungus Serendipita indica helps to reduce Na+ accumulation in plants exposed to salinity

Here is an increasing need to search for alternative strategies to improve tolerance to plant salinity. One of them is to give greater prominence to the microbiota that lives associated with plant roots, specifically the endophytic fungi, which improve the response of the plants to that stress condition.

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- Wednesday, 24 April 2019

The type VI secretion system of Rhizobium etli Mim1 has a positive effect in symbiosis with beans

It is known that bacteria interact with other bacteria, with eukaryotes or with the environment, thanks to proteins that secrete outside the cytoplasm. So far, several secretion systems have been described and some act as nano-syringes by directly injecting proteins that are called effectors into other bacteria or into eukaryotic organisms.

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- Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Engineering tree seasonal cycles of growth through chromatin modification

We summarized the major findings of the chromatin-remodelling role during growth-dormancy cycles and we explored the transcriptional profiling of vegetative apical bud and stem tissues during dormancy as well as discussed genetic strategies designed to improve the growth and quality of forest trees.

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- Wednesday, 13 March 2019

The relevance of being out of order: requirement of Intrinsically Disordered Regions for metalloenzyme biosynthesis

Hydrogenases are key metalloenzymes for the bioproduction and oxidation of hydrogen with potential biotech applications, such as the generation of bio-based fuel cells. The activity of hydrogenases also improves the energy efficiency of nitrogen fixation by recycling the hydrogen evolved from nitrogenase.

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- Thursday, 07 March 2019


A decade at the forefront of Agroforestry Biotech

The Plant Biotechnology and Genomics Center (CBGP), a mixture research center of the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM) and Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA), celebrates its tenth anniversary.


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- Friday, 01 March 2019

TIR-Lectin two-domain protein confers defence properties against spider mite attack

One protein with two domains, lectin and Toll-IL receptor is able to alter not only JA and SA but also different hormonal levels and to confer defence properties in plants against the phytophagous acari Tetranychus urticae.

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- Tuesday, 26 February 2019

Channelling of the metabolic flux through the Vick-Zimmerman pathway contributes to fine-tune plant defence

Oxylipins play important roles in plant defense against biotic and abiotic cues. Because all oxylipins are derived from the same pathway, we investigated how their synthesis might be regulated, focusing on two closely related cytochrome P450 enzymes designated AOS and HPL, respectively.

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- Monday, 25 February 2019

Unravelled new mechanistic insights into the role of histone acetylation in controlling the expression of floral repressor FLC in Arabidopsis

We have demonstrated the role of the Arabidopsis YAF9 proteins in the control of different developmental processes. Our data support that YAF9A and YAF9B are histone H3 readers with unequally redundant functions that control flowering by regulating FLC expression through the modulation of the acetylation levels of histone H4 and H2A.Z at this locus.

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- Thursday, 14 February 2019

An interview with Prof. Francisco García Olmedo

The Spanish Royal Academy of Engineering interviews Prof. Francisco García Olmedo, a retired UPM Full Professor, early inspirer and promoter of CBGP foundation.



- Friday, 08 February 2019

CBGP participates in the R + D + M2 day Woman of Montegancedo

CBGP researchers will celebrate International Day of Women and Girls in Science by taking part in R + D + M2 day Woman of Montegancedo, an event that will be hosted by the CAIT on 11th February 2019.  

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- Tuesday, 05 February 2019

La Caixa INPhINIT Phd Fellows joined CBGP

CBGP recently incorporated two Phd students of prestigious La Caixa INPhINIT fellowship of 2017 call to develop projects related to plants-pest’s interactions and computational evolutionary genomics.

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- Wednesday, 30 January 2019

CBGP researchers awarded with UPM prizes during celebration of St Thomas Aquino´s day

The UPM celebrated the St Thomas Aquino´s day. During the ceremony two Group Leaders of the CBGP (UPM-INIA) were awarded with research prizes: Mark Wilkinson won the prize of the most cited UPM article and Luis Rubio won the prize of collaboration with private sector.

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- Monday, 21 January 2019

An interview with Prof. Pilar Carbonero

Prof. Pilar Carbonero, a CBGP-UPM Full Professor, is interviewed by the Spanish Royal Academy of Engineering (in Spanish) about her long scientific career.



- Tuesday, 15 January 2019

Environmentally sensitive molecular switches drive poplar phenology

The CBGP research group “Circadian and seasonal control group of growth cycles-poplar dormancy” together in collaboration with the “Seasonal growth control in perennial plants” research group from Umeå Plant Science Center describes the latest advances in temperature-related molecular sensors operating during the seasonal control of poplar growth-dormancy cycles.

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- Thursday, 03 January 2019

The first formal data publication from CBGP

As part of the Severo Ochoa objectives for CBGP, we proposed to increase the quality and reusability of our data outputs, as well as increasing the number of high-quality publications from CBGP, through pursuing pure-data publications such as this one.

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Centre for Plant Biotechnology and Genomics UPM – INIA Parque Científico y Tecnológico de la U.P.M. Campus de Montegancedo
Autopista M-40, Km 38 - 28223 Pozuelo de Alarcón (Madrid) Tel.: +34 91 0679100 ext. 79100 Fax: +34 91 7157721. Location and Contact

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