Young Complexity Researchers’ Lunch (YCRL) #9: We do not like too much water, but we can stand it - a modeling study of plant responses to waterlogging


Before the pandemic, we organized biweekly sessions at the CCSS called “Reading Group/Science Jam” for our researchers to discuss challenges in Complex Systems Studies. Now with the possibility to meet in person at the CCSS again, we would like to reintroduce this kind of community building events and make them more approachable for young complexity researchers to share their complex systems science related work in a relaxing and informal settings. All young researchers are welcome!

Therefore, we cordially invite you to the Young Complexity Researchers’ Lunch (YCRL) #9 on Friday 26 May (12:30-13:00) at the Centre for Complex Systems Studies (CCSS) where you can:

  • Get a free gourmet lunch with the best sandwiches you can get in the Utrecht Science Park;

  • Know one young complexity researchers' work over just 30 mins;

  • Contribute your professional knowledge and experiences in a relaxing and informal setting;

  • Develop potential collaboration.

YCRL#9: We do not like too much water, but we can stand it - a modeling study of plant responses to waterlogging
Leading young complexity researcher: Jerry Chen, Biodynamics and Biocomplexity

In natural conditions, drought and flooding can occur consecutively in the same system, and the resulting plant stress responses share similar mechanisms. Therefore, a single theoretical framework that integrates plant responses over a continuum of soil water conditions from drought to flooding is attractive. Although the main physiological processes involved in drought responses are well captured in the Soil-Plant-Atmosphere-Continuum (SPAC) model, a model that describes plant responses to flooding with mechanistic details is so far lacking. Therefore, we focus on developing a toy model that integrates plant oxygen levels, photosynthesis, carbohydrate reserves, and oxygen and carbohydrate consumption through aerobic respiration and fermentation, to describe plant responses to flooding. We use this toy model to investigate different plant strategies in response to waterlogging, in particular aerenchyma formation and radial oxygen loss (ROL) barrier development. Our results show that the effect of ROL barriers is significant only in aerenchyma-rich and deep-rooting plants, which is in line with the natural observation that ROL barriers only co-occur with aerenchyma but aerenchyma can occur without ROL barriers in plants, and that plants with larger rooting depth usually induce and complete ROL barriers faster. We further discuss potential approaches to couple this flooding response model to the SPAC model, and the research questions that this coupled model can answer.

All young researchers are welcome and please feel free to invite your colleagues/friends/classmates/students to join us.

If you would like to have the lunch arrangement, please sign up before 12:00pm Thursday 25 May.


Start date and time
End date and time
Physical Meeting >> CCSS Living Room, Room 4.16, Minnaertgebouw