To what extent do nutrients that are not removed with harvest products circulate through the interconnected production units for plants, insects and fishes?
Which measures can be used to increase the nutrient flow (cycle closure), and thus the nutrient use efficiency?
Is it possible to control the circulation of the nutrients by regulating controllable production factors, such as temperature or light, in order to positively influence the yield and quality of the food?
The scientists from subproject 7 ― which is truly interdisciplinary comprising work with fish, insects and plants including their growth media ― aim to shine a light into these questions. In order to trace the nutrients labeled stable isotopes are used.
Prof. Dr. Christoph-Martin Geilfus has a focus on plant nutrition of agricultural and horticultural crops. Besides, he studies apoplastic stress signalling in the context of guard cell regulation. For this, he uses methods ranging from live cell imaging over proteomics/ionomics to GWAS.
As member of the CUBES project, Mr. Geilfus aims to study nutrient fluxes and nutrient use efficiencies in the combined productions units for fish, plants and insects.
Prof. Dr. Tsu-Wei Chen a plant physiologist and modeller, is the head of the Division Intensive Plant Food Systems at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. He is specialized in the so-called functional-structural plant model.
For the CUBES Circle project, Prof. Dr. Chen aims to model nutrient fluxes and nutrient use efficiencies in the combined productions units for fish, plants and insects.
Dr. Andries Temme is a postdoctoral researcher in the group of Prof. Chen. His research focusses on, combining ecophysiology, genomics, and phenomics, in order to develop vital insights for hardening crops response to environmental stress. He has broad experience in plant responses to abiotic stresses including CO2, light, nutrient, salt and water stresses.
For the CUBES Circle project, Andries will focus on understanding nutrient flows in and around the plant production unit and will focus on how variation in plant traits, specifically roots, affects nutrient uptake and retention in the plants.
Jeffrey J. Jones is a PhD student at the Department for Controlled Environment Horticulture at the ADTI of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. In his Bachelor studies Jeffrey investigated plant-insect interactions between tomato plants and predatory mirids. Within his Master studies he focused on the stomatal reaction to diverse light qualities using live cell imaging.
Within CUBES Circle he focuses on the analysis of the nutrient fluxes in the circular production system plant-fish-insect via isotope labelling. The aim is to optimize the nutrient fluxes for an increased nutrient efficiency of the system.