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Danijela Arsenov

Portrait of Danijela Arsenov, young researcher hired to the lab in the framework of the ECOPOLIS project

My name is Danijela Arsenov and I come from Serbia, from a beautiful city of Novi Sad. Since October 2021, I’m hosted by Chrono-environment Laboratory of the University of Franche-Comté as a Postdoctoral Researcher.

What is your background before coming to the lab?

Before starting this postdoc position, I was employed as a Research Associate at the University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Sciences, Department of Biology and Ecology, where I’ve finished my bachelor, master and PhD studies. During my studies I gained both, theoretical and practical knowledge in different fields of biology, but curiosity and enthusiasm to learn more about fundamental processes in plants, as well as to understand how plants react to their environment, led me to start work in the Laboratory for Plant Physiology. During my education, I’ve been taught to be an open-minded, hardworking and enthusiastic person, and to easily accept new concepts and ideas. Because of the desire to engage further in research and evolve my knowledge I’ve applied and received a number of scholarships for short mobility programs and trainings in different laboratories abroad (Belarus, France, Poland, Finland, Netherlands).

Why come to this lab?

In a desire to become a proficient scientist and expert, by my opinion, it is necessary to gain international experience. Therefore, I wanted to commingle with experts in the field of phytoremediation, as well as in plant-microorganisms interaction and to learn new skills regarding these topics. I firmly believe that working with prestigious professionals would upgrade the quality of my current knowledge, and will be valuable for my future work. Thus, I’ve chosen the Chrono-environment Laboratory and the group of Prof. Michel Chalot, whose expertise in the field of phytomanagement and plant-microbe interactions are evident through a number of his projects, publications and citations, including several international collaborations. Additionally, the Chrono-environment Lab is an evolving institution with a number of young scientists and well-recognized experts covering different aspects of applied biology and environmental studies, so it can offer me a wide range of possibilities to upgrade my scientific work.
My post-doc is funded by the Conseil Regional de Bourgogne Franche Comté.

What is your research topic and what will you do during your stay here?

My research is mainly focused on plant-ecophysiology, especially on the plant response under abiotic stress conditions. The major goal of my current work is understanding the mechanisms underlying heavy metals accumulation, acclimatization, and tolerance in plants exposed to contaminated environment. In general, heavy metal stress often cause a series of morphological, physiological, biochemical and molecular changes that unfavorably affect plant growth, development and productivity. Phytoremediation as an eco-friendly concept is widely used technology in decontamination of polluted land, but novel approaches including implementation of different chelating agents and nanomaterials are raising a special attention aiming improve plants’ phytoextraction possibilities and their survival in changed environment. Having in mind that phytomanagement of degraded environment presents a global problem and big challenge, during my one-year stay, I’ll be included in the ECOPOLIS project led by Prof. Chalot, which is funded by the ANR. The main goal behind this project is to restore contaminated lands in an urban environment, with the goal to establish a living-lab. Aiming to achieve the main goal I’ll use fullerenol (carbon nanoparticles) synthesized by my home institution, Department of Chemistry, Biochemistry and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Sciences, Novi Sad, on plants exposed to toxic metals, in order to improve plant vitality and productivity at a contaminated site. The effectiveness of fullerenol in alleviation of abiotic stress, particularly drought, has already been addressed, but its effectiveness in different plants and environmental conditions still requires further elucidation. Therefore, sharing and discussing the results of this novel approach to the application of carbon nanoparticles can open a new scientific question and networking, which can be inspired to other researches on the global scale.

danijela.arsenov at
4 place Tharradin, 25200 Montbéliard, doctoral students’ room 1st floor

Main articles:
- Arsenov D, Župunski M, Pajević S, Borišev M, Nikolić N, Mimica-Dukić N. 2021. Health assessment of medicinal herbs, celery and parsley related to cadmium soil pollution-potentially toxic elements (PTEs) accumulation, tolerance capacity and antioxidative response. Environmental Geochemistry and Health
- Župunski M, Arsenov D, Borišev M, Nikolić N, Pajević S. 2021. Should I GROW or should I SLOW: A meta‐analysis of fast‐growing tree‐species grown in cadmium perturbed environment. Physiologia Plantarum
- Borišev M, Borišev I, Župunski M, Arsenov D, Pajević S, Ćurčić Ž, Vasin J, Đorđević A. 2016.Drought impact is alleviated in sugar beet (Beta vulgaris L.) by foliar application of fullerenol nanoparticles. PLoS ONE

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