Until 2023: MICRO – Plant-Microbe Systems
Research in the Programme Area "Biotic Interactions" (BIOTIC) aims to better understand natural plant defence strategies under consideration of environmental influences. The research focusses on the interactions between plants and other organisms. We use the knowledge gained to develop sustainable and environmentally friendly cultivation systems in horticulture with low input and high output (SDG 12) and improved plant health and productivity (UN Sustainable Development Goals SDG 2 and SDG 3).
Biotic stressors, such as microbial pathogens and herbivorous insects are a major cause of yield losses in plant production systems. The use of pesticides to combat these pathogens and herbivores threatens biodiversity far beyond the agroecosystems in which they are applied, and harm the health of producers and consumers. A better understanding of the underlying physiological and molecular mechanisms of plant defence systems is required to reduce pesticide use in sustainable plant production systems. We thereby focus on plant and soil microbiomes as important elements of plant health and productivity as well as on chemical and molecular mechanisms underlying natural resistance to pathogens and herbivores.
The Programme Area BIOTIC is organised in two Research Groups:
Former research groups