Like humans, plants harbour complex microbiota, which contribute to the health of their host. We are interested in understanding the mechanisms underlying this microbiota-mediated health protection and focus on a particular feature of plant-associated bacteria, namely their ability to emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs). We have shown in earlier work that these VOCs have diverse antagonistic effects against microbes causing important diseases in crops such as potato or grapevine. My talk will focus on the functions of these volatiles in microbial communication, and highlight putative applications of this research for sustainable crop protection.
Laure Weisskopf obtained her PhD in microbiology and plant physiology in 2005 at the University of Neuchâtel (CH). After a post-doctoral stay in Kenya, she worked as junior group leader at the University of Zurich, where she later obtained the venia legendi. After a few years in more applied research institutions, she came back to academia in 2017, when she obtained a professorship for plant-microbe interactions at the University of Fribourg. Her research group is since then dedicated to unravel at least some of the many wonders of plant-associated bacteria.
Moderation: Professorin Dr. Katharina Riedel