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Plant roots are a largely untapped resource and a key for crop improvement because virtually all mineral nutrients in the human diet are extracted from soil by roots. Root systems continuously adjust their architectural, physiological and metabolic performance to adapt to alterations of the biotic and abiotic environment. The development of crops with root systems that efficiently capture water and nutrients will safeguard food security and sustainability of agriculture.

Our research focuses on the genetic control and environmental regulation of the formation and functioning of the root system and its biotic interaction with soil microbes in maize. We aim to develop a theoretical framework to incorporate beneficial root-microbe interactions into crop breeding and alleviation of environmental costs originated from excessive agricultural inputs.

Picture1-600x400.jpgP1: Genetic Control and Environmental Adaptation of Maize Root Formation

  • Staff: Danning Wang
  • Funding: DFG
  • Partners: CAAS, China
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Bild2-600x400.jpgP2: Root Branching and Its Biotic Interaction with Soil Microbesin Maize


Picture3-600x400.jpgP3: Genetic Control and Nutrient-dependency of Root-microbe Interaction in Maize

  • Staff: N.N.
  • Funding: Emmy Noether
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Picture4-600x400.jpgP4: Co-adaptation of Maize Roots and Inhabiting Microbes under Environmental Stresses

  • Staff: Xiaoming He
  • Partners: SWU, China
  • more...