PLANT-MICROBE-INSECT 3-WAY INTERACTIONS: A HOLISTIC SYSTEM-BIOLOGY APPROACH TO UNCOVER HOW ROOT MUTUALIST MICROBES AFFECT ANTIHERBIVORY DEFENSES TO OPTIMIZE CROP PROTECTION
Funding entity: Fundación Salamanca Ciudad de Cultura y Saberes and Salamanca City Council, projects to attract talent to Salamanca.
Principal Investigator: Ainhoa Martínez Medina.
The aim is to explore how mutualistic fungi associated with plant roots affect the plant immune system against insect herbivore attack; from subcellular mechanisms to the functioning of communities in agricultural systems. Through a holistic approach combining the integrative use of different “omics” techniques, computational biology, bioinformatics and genomics, combined with field experiments we aim to identify key processes in the induction of resistance to insect pests by beneficial microorganisms, in order to optimize their use in agricultural systems.