Fudan University has a good tradition of research and training in Plant Biology ever since 1949. Many famous professors had worked here and had great achievements in both teaching and research areas. In June 2008, Professor Hong Ma, a well-known plant molecular and developmental biologist, joined Fudan University as the Dean of School of Life Sciences. One of Ma’s goals of coming to Fudan is to promote plant biology. In December of 2008, with the support of Fudan leaders and faculty, the Institute of Plant Biology was establish to further enhance research and training in plant biology. This institute combines faculty members from the Departments of Biochemistry, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, and Genetics and Genetic Engineering, with a total of 21 full and associate professors. Two main areas of focus of the institute are (a) plant genetics and development under different environments, (b) plant ecology and evolutionary-developmental biology. The current director is Professor Hong Ma.

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