Investigating the basis of competitive nodulation & N-fixation in Rhizobium leguminosarum

Lead Research Organisation: University of Oxford
Department Name: Interdisciplinary Bioscience DTP


Some soil-dwelling bacteria in the genus Rhizobium can form symbioses with plants of the Legume family, which includes several important crop plants such as peas and beans. Inoculation of leguminous crops with rhizobia can significantly increase yields for farmers while reducing inorganic fertiliser usage, and many commercial inoculants have been developed. The e ectiveness of a strain for use in a commercial inoculant is partly dependent upon the ability of the strain to compete with a soil's native rhizobia to successfully initiate symbioses with the crop plants. High-throughput transposon insertion sequencing (INSeq) techniques are being used to identify and investigate genes contributing to competitiveness. It is hoped that the data can be used to develop competitive and e ective Rhizobium strains for use in commercial inoculants.
BBSRC Priority Areas Addressed
Agriculture and Food Security
Sustainably Enhancing Agricultural Production
Reducing Waste in the Food Chain
Synthetic Biology



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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
BB/M011224/1 01/10/2015 30/09/2023
1948170 Studentship BB/M011224/1 01/10/2017 30/09/2021 Brandon Leo Ford
Description 21st Congress on Nitrogen Fixation - 10th-15th Oct 2019, Wuhan, China - Philip Poole 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Phil gave a talk at this international conference. He had many questions on his work and spent time exchanging ideas with colleagues in this research area.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2019