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BioSensing and rhizospherE – eNdosphere geochemical microprofiling of polychlorinated byphenils degradation by Soil microbiota upon stimulation of root Exudates


Phyto-rhyzo-remediation is a promising technology for pollutant clean-up provided by the plant holobiont, composed by the host plant and its microbiota. Plant root exudation is modulated by the pollution stress and has a key role in the activation of the microbial degrading metabolism. Despite the well documented role of the plant holobiont in ecosystem services, the complex interactions between host and microbiome are poorly understood, in particular in contaminated environments. SENSE is an innovative, interdisciplinary approach to sort out the time-spatial synergistic interplay within the plant holobiont components and the geochemistry of rhizosphere micro-niches supporting microbial degradation. The project will take place in a top-rated Italian research university and spans metabolomic techniques, biosensors, together with an original application of microsensor/sensor devices to profile the chemistry of the root microenvironments. The study will be applied to one of the largest sites in Europe contaminated by polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB), located in Italy. The research will be approached from two complementary angles: i) set up and application of bacterial biosensors to examine topology and dynamics of activation of the PCB degradation pathways upon stimulation by identified plant root exudates; ii) sensing the plant-modulated chemical micro-habitats through microsensor/sensor devices during plant-microbe interaction under PCBs stress. This will provide a proof of concept for the role of root exudates as boost of soil microbiome degradative potential. SENSE outcomes will provide a comprehensive understanding of the plant holobiont applied to environmental biotechnology, representing an opportunity for Europe to keep its leadership in research and green biotechnology. Additionally, this project will significantly enhance my skills and capabilities as experienced researcher in microbial and plant-sciences, to become a leader in this field


Net EU contribution
€ 183 473,28
Via Festa Del Perdono 7
20122 Milano

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Nord-Ovest Lombardia Milano
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Non-EU contribution
€ 0,00