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Wheat microbiome: comparison and characterization of ancestors and modern cultivars

Grant number: 14/04099-4
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2014
Effective date (End): June 30, 2017
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Microbiology
Cooperation agreement: Coordination of Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES)
Principal Investigator:Rodrigo Mendes
Grantee:Maike Rossmann
Home Institution: Embrapa Meio-Ambiente. Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuária (EMBRAPA). Ministério da Agricultura, Pecuária e Abastecimento (Brasil). Jaguariúna , SP, Brazil

Abstract

Sustainable agriculture requires a decrease in the use of mineral nutrients and pesticides, and alternative strategies are required to maintain productive cropping systems while also reducing environmental impact. Microorganisms present in the rhizosphere can have profound impacts on plant growth, nutrition and health. Studies have shown that modern plant breeding, as well as the use of management practices such as tillage and fertilization, influence the plant root microbiome, though at present the significance of these differences are poorly understood. Here we propose to study the diversity, identity and function of beneficial and antagonistic microbial communities present in the rhizosphere and endosphere of seed and root of modern wheat cultivars (Triticum aestivum) compared with their ancestors. The coupling of traditional approaches with advanced sequencing techniques will be used in order to obtain new perspectives for the understanding of root-associated microbial life. The wheat cultivars used in this study will be available from Germplasm Bank of Rothamsted Research and collaborators connected to BBSRC, UK. Initiatives like this are necessary to promote and encourage the development of new approaches to improve the growth and health of plants and thus enhance the production of biomass with sustainability. (AU)