Soil and plant-associated microbial communities represent an important resource of plant growth promoting microorganisms. These communities are shaped by complex interactions between community members, the plant and the surrounding environment. Selected strains have the potential to promote plant growth and heath. To benefit from this potential it becomes important to understand their basic ecology as well as the molecular mechanisms responsible for plant growth promotion.
The research group is engaged in analyses of microbiome assembly and composition; and in development of novel isolation procedures to obtain microorganisms with optimal performance in soil and plant environments. We combine genomics and transcriptomics, marker / reporter gene technologies and advanced chemical analyses to decipher the mode of action of plant beneficial microorganisms as well as the biotic and abiotic factors influencing establishment in the rhizosphere.
Current Research Topics:
- Microbial biofertilizers for enhanced crop availability of phosphorous pools in soil and waste
- Microbial inoculants in furture cropping
- Rhizophere microbiomes of deep rooted crops
Developing Research Ideas
- Antibiotics in bacterial-fungal interactions
- Burkholderia interactions with fungi
- Imaging technologies for deciphering microbial signalling