Breeding cereals to promote beneficial microbial associations (MALONE_J17ICASE1)

Lead Research Organisation: University of East Anglia
Department Name: Graduate Office

Abstract

As pressure increases to reduce agricultural inputs, more efficient nutrient use has become an important breeding objective. Many plants including cereals such as barley form beneficial associations with soil microbes, which contribute to nutrient assimilation and protect against pathogen attack. Understanding the plant and microbial genetic traits that contribute to efficient colonisation thus has huge potential for the production of improved, low-input cereals and novel crop treatments. This studentship will investigate how strains of the beneficial soil bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens colonise barley roots, and how this affects disease resistance and plant growth. Near-infrared and micromalting analysis will be performed with our industrial CASE partner; New Heritage Barley, to examine the effect of microbial colonisation on grain quality and flavour. The ultimate aim of this research will be to select and breed barley varieties that encourage beneficial microbial associations.

Publications

10 25 50

Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
BB/M011216/1 01/10/2015 30/09/2023
1941081 Studentship BB/M011216/1 01/07/2017 30/09/2021 Alba Pacheco Moreno
 
Description Barley genetics 
Organisation John Innes Centre
Department Department of Crop Genetics
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution Scientific publications after completion and expertise in the microbial side of the project.
Collaborator Contribution The lab of Dr Paul Nicholson has been absolutely crucial for pushing forward the plant genetics side of this project. They contributed enormously to the completion of QTL analysis and selection of relevant genotypes.
Impact No outputs yet, since the project is still on-going.
Start Year 2018
 
Description iCASE partner 
Organisation New Heritage Barley Limited
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution My investigation will help to understand how barley plant interact with soil bacteria and ultimate, this could result in the identification of key genes for breeding new barley cultivars with an enhanced capability to recruit beneficial bacteria.
Collaborator Contribution New Heritage Barley has provided with the plant material necessary for this project. Also, I have been involved in the daily routines of the company, such as visits to malting factories, farmers and field station. All this has given me the opportunity to learn about the company view of my project as well as the valuable personal experience of getting to learn about something completely different than being in the lab.
Impact Breeders day 18 at JIC Breeders day 19 at JIC This collaboration may be considered as multi-disciplinary since Agricultural Sciences, Plant Biology, Microbiology and Bioinformatics are all part of the project.
Start Year 2017
 
Description Breeder's Day 2018 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Every year, the John Innes Centre organises an open day focussing on plant breeding. As part of this event, I gave a brief talk about my research to professionals within the plant breeding sector: breeders, agronomists, farmers, etc.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Breeder's Day 2019 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Every year, the John Innes Centre organises an open day focussing on plant breeding. As part of this event, we organised a visit to our experimental fields to show all the participants what the on-going projects were and talk them about the specific project that we were involved in.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2019
 
Description Department of Molecular Microbiology Exhibitor at JIC 50 Open Day 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact As a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the John Innes Centre, we organised an exhibition aimed towards the general public, pupils, etc. The main target was the local public in the Norfolk area. The department of Molecular Microbiology which I belong to, set a stall containing several activities: 2 Roller-up banners, 4 posters, soil microbiology plates, plants showing influence of Pseudomonas in health, antibiotic bioassay plates, microscopic preparations, paper and column chromatography game, antibiotic hunters game, stickers and wheel game.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Department of Molecular Microbiology Exhibitor at Norwich Science Festival Learning Week 16th and 17th October 2017 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Every year, the Norwich Science festival is organised. On 2017, The department of Molecular Microbiology which I belong to, set a stall containing several activities: 2 Roller-up banners, 4 posters, soil microbiology plates, plants showing influence of Pseudomonas in health, antibiotic bioassay plates, microscopic preparations, paper and column chromatography game, antibiotic hunters game, stickers and wheel game.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017