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Laurence Galhaut graduated in Biology of Organisms and Ecology from the University of Namur and the Catholic University of Louvain (interuniversity master) in 2013. She obtained a teaching qualification in sciences for upper secondary education in 2014. All along her formation, plant biology with an applied side fascinated her. She began a PhD in agricultural sciences in the Plant Biology Laboratory of Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech in October 2014. Besides research activities, she is also involved in Bachelor Plant Biology course as an assistant.
Nowadays, agriculture tends to respect the environment and to limit mineral fertilizers use. In recent years, manufacturers are developing products with variable composition (like seaweed extract, humic acid, PGPR, protein hydrolysate, etc…) that have an indirect action on plants. These products are gathered under a new name: biostimulants.
The definition of biostimulants is not fixed and it is subject to regular reviewing by stakeholders. Nevertheless, the definition currently accepted takes into account the agronomic effects attributed to these substances, namely, nutrient efficiency, tolerance to abiotic stresses, growth and crops quality. Until now, no standardized procedure for the evaluation of the biostimulants efficacy has been developed. Moreover these products have not legal status yet.
In this context, the research project aims at devising and testing a methodology and standardized procedures to assess the efficacy of plant biostimulants, by studying physiological effects linked to interesting agronomic traits.