At the Botanical Garden, research projects are conducted by a team of botanist-researchers at the division of research and scientific development. They are members of the Institut de Recherche en Biologie Végétale (IRBV), a corporation that is the result of a partnership between the Montréal Botanical Gardena and the Université de Montréal. Its researchers work for one of the two institutions, but the IRBV fosters a climate of cooperation that is conducive to scientific activities, looking for funding and training students.
Research conducted by the botanist-researchers at the Botanical Garden is part of the IRBV’s general scientific program. The research program has three main orientations:
- Cellular and molecular biology
- Biodiversity and evolution
- Ecology and ecosystem management
Cellular and molecular biology
How do a plant organism and its cells function? What are the mechanisms of its development? How do genes coordinate to produce structures of extreme complexity? Using cutting-edge approaches in genomics, proteomics and cellular imagery, cellular and molecular biology researchers try to answer these questions by studying the relationship of proteins’ structure and function, cell signalling, sexual reproduction, cytomechanics, metabolism and biological rhythms.
Biodiversity and evolution
There are between 1.5 million and 6 million species on Earth. There are more than 350,000 species of plants and over 70,000 species of fungi. How can we explain the diversity of these groups? How can genetic diversity and morphological diversity be combined? To answer these questions, we study different aspects of distribution, evolution and conservation of plants and fungi.
Ecology and ecosystem management
Contemporary ecology must play an important role in finding solutions to environmental problems based on a better understanding of how ecosystems work. In this context, ecology and environment research activities are oriented towards urban, peri-urban and agro-forestry concerns: biological control, phytotechnology, intensive forestry, etc.