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  • Signal transduction in root symbiosis (Parniske)

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    We investigate interactions between plants and symbiotic or pathogenic microorganisms and elucidate the molecular processes that lead to the cellular reprogramming and redifferentiation associated with mutual compatibility or defence. Likewise, we explore natural diversity and ecological approaches to identify allelic variation governing agriculturally important traits, like efficiency of nitrogen fixation, nutrient uptake, or disease resistance. more

  • Trypanosome differentiation and host interaction (Boshart)

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    A successful parasitic life strategy of pathogens requires cellular adaptation to changing host environments and effective signaling to control the host-parasite interaction. Trypanosoma and Leishmania are protozoan parasites and important tropical pathogens transmitted by blood-sucking insect vectors. They cause severe and difficult-to-treat human diseases. The Boshart group studies a signaling pathway that uses the small molecule cAMP to transmit information. more

  • Genetics and genomics of plant-environment interactions (Becker)

  • Microbial Functional Genomics (Brachmann)

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    We use genomics to elucidate functional traits in microbes more

  • Bacterial colonisation of plant cells (Marín)

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    Symbiotic and pathogenic microorganisms use common strategies to colonise plants. We are particularly interested in understanding how symbiotic bacteria successfully infect host cells and are able to persist intracellularly using some of these common strategies. more

  • Plant health (Robatzek)

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    Plant health is fundamental to sustainable agriculture. It ensures the supply of agricultural produce for human and animal dietary needs. Yet, agricultural production is frequently lost to diseases caused by pathogens. We focus on the regulation of plant-encoded immune receptors and investigate mechanisms by which pathogens can activate and suppress immune signalling. We also address how multi-host pathogens achieve infection across plant species, a fascinating aspect given the genetic diversity of the immune system in the plant kingdom. more

  • Genome Plasticity and Computational Genetics (Schneeberger)

  • Pathogen small RNAs as host immunity suppressors (Weiberg)

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    Small RNAs are gene regulatory units present in all living organisms. Small RNAs can move between cells, and spread over entire tissues, organisms, and even between organisms. We are interested to understand, how microbial pathogens use mobile small RNAs to interfere with host physiology and suppress host immunity to facilitate infection. more