The goal of our research is to understand the mechanisms that determine the plasticity and evolution of the plant genome. Plants are fast runners in the evolutionary race. There are hundreds of thousands of plant species, genome size is highly variable in the plant kingdom, some species have ~100,000 genes (4 times more than Human) and plants show high tolerance to genetic alterations, including to changes in ploidy.  In a single species such as maize the amount of genetic diversity is greater than in all primates. We are studying the contribution of mechanisms such as transposition, DNA recombination (homologous and non-homologous), hybridization and poyploidy, to rapid genome evolution.   A general theme of our research is the connection between epigenetic modifications and the maintenance of genome integrity.  In addition, we are harnessing DNA repair mechanisms for developing new approaches for precise genome editing for plant breeding.  Our favorite organisms are Arabidopsis, tomato, wheat and yeast.