Interaction of Roots with Soil Bacteria

Plants release up to 40% of their assimilates into the rhizosphere in order to attract and to “feed” a bacterial community which in turn protects roots from pathogenic microorganisms and helps to acquire nutrients (Berendsen et al., 2012).

Plants recognize bacteria by conserved structures (PAMPs) like e.g. parts of the flagellum, which are important for their survival. The recognition event leads to the activation of an antimicrobial defense program. In collaboration with the Stülke lab we will investigate whether beneficial root-associated soil bacteria suppress plant immunity or whether they have developed mechanisms to cope with the antibacterial weapons of the plant root.