S1. Population epigenomics in natural systems
Chaired by Katrin Heer, Mónica Medrano, Xavier Pico
The investigation of the causes and consequences of epigenetic variation in natural populations represents a cornerstone to decipher the role of epigenetics in ecological and evolutionary research. In this session, we aim at discussing theoretical and empirical research on the importance of epigenetic variation across populations and species in the natural world and its possible interaction with genetic and environmental variation.
S2. Epigenetic regulation of plant phenotypes
Chaired by María Teresa Boquete, Claude Becker, Katrin Heer
During this session we aim to discuss research that advances our understanding of how and to what extent epigenetic regulation shapes plant phenotypes. We welcome studies focused on a variety of model and non-model systems under different ecological and developmental contexts as well as tissue-specific epigenetic regulation studies.
S3. Bioinformatic analyses in plant epigenetics
Chaired by Noé Fernández-Pozo, María Teresa Boquete, Francisco Balao
Technological advances have produced a large increment of epigenetic data in the last decade, raising new bioinformatic challenges to analyze massive amounts of data to understand epigenetic variation and regulation in plants. Research topics in this session, could include: i) bioinformatic analysis of DNA methylation, histone modifications, non-coding RNA, transposable elements, QTLs, ii) effects of epigenetic in combination with other omics such as genomics or transcriptomics, and iii) the development of useful resources such as bioinformatic analysis tools, databases, pipelines, models, benchmarks, etc.

S4. Epigenetic memory and transgenerational inheritance
Chaired by Koen Verhoeven, Conchita Alonso, Lars Opgenoorth
Central questions in plant epigenetics relate to the stability of epigenetic variants, that arise in response to environmental exposure or due to other epimutational processes. The mode of reproduction such as clonal reproduction, viviparity, in-vitro-propagation and grafting, is often neglected in these discussions even though they are important both in nature and agronomy and forestry. Research questions in this session could include processes of priming and stability of priming as well as ecological role in clonal plants. We also welcome investigations of somatic epimutations and their role as a new tool in epigenetic clocks.
S5. Epigenetic regulation as a response to changes in environmental conditions
Chaired by Lars Opgenoorth, Oliver Bossdorf, Francisco Balao
Different epigenetic mechanisms are involved in gene expression regulation and have a decisive function in the phenotypical and physiological responses of plants to changes in environment. The knowledge of the interplay between epigenetic regulation and responses to alterations in their abiotic conditions is indispensable to understand how plants can adapt to changes in local or global environment, especially in a world context of climate change. In this session we welcome all types of research that provide new insight into any aspect of the epigenetic regulatory mechanisms and their function in relation with environmentally induced plant responses, including their agricultural applications.
S6. Epigenetic regulation of biotic interactions
Chaired by Conchita Alonso, Claude Becker
Plants constantly interact with a range of mutualist and antagonist animals, microbes and neighbouring plants. Besides genetic diversity and environmental components, epigenetic factors such as DNA methylation, small RNAs, and post-translational histone modifications have emerged as relevant modulators of plants’ responses to biotic interactions. In this session, we would like to discuss the challenges and recent advances on this research topic and welcome observational and experimental studies focused in analysing how interacting organisms can affect the plant’s epigenome, and how in turn epigenomic traits can alter the magnitude of current and future biotic interactions. Contributions on the potential applications in agriculture and weed management are also highly appreciated.