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Using mycorrhizal-induced resistance as a sustainable alternative to chemical pesticides in cereal agriculture


In this proposal we will apply a novel high throughput methodology to study interactions between fungal mycorrhiza, host plants and soil bacteria, in order to develop wheat lines with induced resistance to fungal diseases. Implementation of the revision of 9/414/EEC means most of the effective fungicides against diseases in cereals will be withdrawn, increasing the risk of major crop failure. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi increase host plant nutrient uptake and often induce systemic resistance against other pathogens. Selecting crops more suitable to act as host of mycorrhizal fungi will provide varieties with broad and durable spectrum resistance or tolerance to diseases, and increase competitiveness of the crop for uptaking soil nutrients (useful against weeds). These will reduce dependence on chemical treatments (both, fertilizers and pesticides), and as a consequence, the input cost for the farmers will be reduced, the environmental impact minimised, and the food security increased.

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Firth Court Western Bank
S10 2TN Sheffield
United Kingdom

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Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Joanne Watson (Ms.)
EU contribution
€ 309 235,20