Working Group 1
Ecology of endophytes
A key component of the Action aims at understanding the ecology of microbial endophytes hosted by the natural vegetation and important crop plants. Based on this knowledge, it will be possible to identify and isolate endophytes, which colonize a specific plant and exhibit desirable effects on plant growth/health and which can persist under various environmental stresses. Execution of following tasks will achieve a better understanding of endophytes, which is of importance for further application:
- Survey of endophyte populations in key plants for European agriculture and ecosystems taking into account different environmental conditions, stresses and management practices. The Action also aims at identifying management practices to protect endophyte populations and warranting their beneficial effects in European ecosystems.
- Experiments to better understand endophytic colonization, life cycle and expression of plant beneficial characteristics in planta. Efficient colonization of various plant parts is of primary importance for the application of endophytes, however, colonization (particularly of above ground plant parts) is not well understood. Furthermore, plant growth promoting characteristics have been mostly investigated under laboratory conditions, and therefore a better understanding is needed to how the plant and the environment effect the expression of these beneficial traits under field conditions.
Leader Working Group 1
Leo van Overbeek l.s.vanoverbeek(at)wur.nl
Vice-Leader Working Group 1
Andrea Campisano andrea.campisano(at)iasma.it