In our research we are interested in plant-microbe interactions with special focus on the molecular aspect of them and on plant immunity. The particular aim of our lab is to become a world leading laboratory in research focused on poppy plant immunity and poppy protection against pathogens and pests.
Phytopathogens are of huge economic importance, threatening both quantity and quality of food production. Reducing crop losses from disease epidemics caused by pathogens is critical for the supply of agricultural produce. On the other hand, colonisation of plants with beneficial microbes can stimulate plant growth by increasing the nutrient uptake by roots or prime plants for enhanced defence against biotic and abiotic stresses, which can help to improve (or bring new approaches to) efforts to reach more sustainable agriculture. In the last three decades the understanding of molecular plant-microbe interactions made big steps forward, and ongoing research shows the topic is of huge importance and is fascinating.
The importance of our research was propagated by the United Nations announcement of the year 2020 to become an International of plant health (see video bellow).