The Biological Resource Centre (BRC) collects, produces and characterizes Arabidopsis thaliana plants with different genetic characteristics, for example natural variants or mutants. These resources are both distributed to the scientific community and used in BRC research projects.
The BRC has created large collections of mutants, which are used to investigate the functions of the genes. It also offers numerous worldwide natural variants, as well as plants resulting from crosses between these variants, which allow the analysis of the impact of natural diversity, particularly on complex traits of plant life such as growth, development, reproduction, stress tolerance, etc.
An essential question in biology is to understand the origin of speciation. We are interested in hybrid incompatibilities observed in the BRC collections, a phenomenon in which the fitness of hybrids is much lower than that of the parents. These hybrid incompatibilities create reproductive barriers and can therefore lead to the formation of different species. Given the amotun of genetic resources available, Arabidopsis thaliana provides an excellent model to explore the genetic and molecular mechanisms behind such incompatibilities.