The aim of PHASER is to study the presence of bacteriophages in four insect vectors of important plant diseases, using both an innovative, based on RNAseq analysis, and a traditional, based on microscopic observations, approach. The chosen insects are the phytoplasma vectors Scaphoideus titanus and Euscelidius variegatus, and the virus vectors Thrips tabaci and Frankliniella occidentalis. The project will widen the knowledge of the microbiome of these important plant pests and will pose the basis for the development of microbe-based strategies for their containment, to reduce the use of chemical pesticides in agriculture. Results will also demonstrate the usefulness of transcriptomic data in bacteriophage research, opening the possibility to base numerous studies on sequences present in public databases.
Project leader: Marta Vallino
IPSP personnel: Simona Abbà, Marika Rossi, Marina Ciuffo, Gabriele Martino, Luciana Galetto, Cristina Marzachì, Massimo Turina, Flavio Veratti, Concetta Mottura, Josè Saporita, Daniela Cerro, Danila Fiaschi, Rosaria Fusco, Pamela Incletoli