Interaction of plants with biological agents (INTER)

INTER is the research activity that deals with the study of plant-parasite-antagonist-symbiont interactions in natural, agricultural and forest ecosystems. It adopts multidisciplinary approaches aiming to expand the molecular, biochemical, physiological knowledge underlying the communication between plants and other organisms. INTER includes studies on interactions with plant pathogens and parasites including fungi, viruses and viroids, bacteria and phytoplasmas, insects, nematodes. Plant Growth Promoting Rhizobacteria/Fungi (PGPR and PGPF respectively), root symbionts such as mycorrhizal fungi, endophytes and other microorganisms are also studied for their properties to improve plant nutrition and protection. Interactions with antagonistic fungi are also studied in order to optimise the biological control of pests and other damage agents.

INTER then focuses on the study of beneficial or harmful interactions. In this regard, INTER includes environmental studies to contextualize specific interactions with plants.

Keywords: mycorrhizae, endophytes, PGPR, beneficial interactions, plant pathogen interactions, semiochemicals.