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Forschergruppe GRK 1798 „Signaling at the Plant-Soil Interface“- Topic 4: Mechanisms of carbon-nutrient trading in mycorrhizal symbioses and consequences for carbon sequestration in soils

Leitung:Prof. Dr. Georg Guggenberger, Dr. Jens Boy
Bearbeitung:Cornelia Schneider, Alberto Andrino de la Fuente, Mauricio Aguirre Morales
Förderung durch:Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)

Executive summary of “Plant Soil Interface”

The soil is a complex signal space, where plants interact not only with symbiotic and pathogenic micro-organisms, but are also confronted with the different availability of nutrients. In the Research Training Group (RTG), the complex  main topic "Plant-Soil Interface" is investigated in two lines of research: The interplay with biotic microbial partners in symbiotic and pathogenic interactions as well as the consequences of the abiotic factor "nutrient limitation and accessibility". Thereby we expect answers with respect to the following questions: (1) How are soil-borne signals or the growth stimulation by rhizobacterial biofilms processed in roots? (2) What similarities and differences exist in the processing of these signals? (3) What consequences does signal perception in roots have for whole-plant metabolism and how does signal perception in roots relate to that? The research concept of our RTG is based on a close interconnection of various disciplines such as plant genetics, plant genomics, plant biotechnology, plant nutrition, horticulture, microbiology, and soil science, all of them being represented at the Herrenhausen Campus. This location is characterized by the recent appointment of several Full Professors in the relevant disciplines. In addition, we rely on an excellent infrastructure including several new research buildings, which altogether offer the most modern laboratories for our graduate students and hence a dynamic, excellent environment for the RTG as a whole. With respect to experimental procedures, we combine molecular, genome-based, microbiological, and physiological approaches with expertise in soil science and horticulture, that way providing an ambitious, broad training in the whole area of plant sciences in connection with microbiology and soil science. In our qualification concept, we place a particular emphasis on training efforts that support early, independent publication in refereed journals to guarantee international visibility of the research carried out in the RTG. Apart from teaching advanced theoretical and experimental knowledge via tutorials and short courses, the training of scientific presentation and writing in small groups constitutes a major part of the study programme. This is complemented by relevant modules from a portfolio of job qualifications courses organized by the Graduate Academy of Leibniz Universität Hannover.