Duration: 5 years (2015-20)

Project Leader: Benjamin Péret

Total amount: 1.997.103 €

Funding body: ERC - "Starting grant" scheme

Main objectives

The "LUPIN ROOTS" ERC "Starting grant" project aims at unravelling cluster root development in white lupin (Lupinus albus). This ambitious project funds numerous axes of research in order to develop all the tools needed to set up lupin as a model species.

Lupin mutant screening facility

In 2016, we built 3 growth chambers dedicated to screening constitutive cluster root forming mutants. We produced an EMS-mutagenized population and screened thousands of seedlings. We identified several mutants that are currently analyzed to better understand the cluster root formation process.

White lupin genome sequencing

We sequenced the genome of white lupin var. AMIGA by combining the production of long reads (PacBio Sequel), short reads (Illumina HiSeq 3000) and optical maps (Bionano Genomics). We obtained a high quality assembly. This part of the project is a collaboration with Hélène Bergès (CNRGV, Toulouse) and Jérôme Gouzy (LIPM, Toulouse).

Rootlet developmental atlas

We are generating a detailed histological description of rootlet development. We are developing genetic transformation in order to use molecular markers for a better description of developmental, hormonal and growth events.

Transcriptomics analysis

We are providing detailed transcriptomics datasets from both spatial and a temporal sampling procedures. This RNAseq approach will provide invaluable informations that will be the basis of gene network inference analysis.


This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 637420).