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Signaling role of Strigolactones at the interface between plants, microorganisms and a changing environment (SLEPS)

Progetti d'Ateneo
Ente finanziatore
01/01/2015 - 31/12/2015
Cristina Prandi

Aree / Gruppi di ricerca

Partecipanti al progetto

Descrizione del progetto

Project summary
Strigolactones (SLs) are newly discovered hormones that contribute to define plant morphology,
and to the molecular dialogue with (micro)organisms in soil. They act as mediators between
environmental inputs and plant morphogenesis, but little is known about how they interact with
various biomolecules to elicit a response in plants; also, their synthesis and perception pathways
are still poorly understood. Recently, a local network of scientists, including organic chemists,
botanists, and plant biologists, has merged different disciplines with the purpose to advance
knowledge about SLs, and has generated a number of tools that await further exploitation. The
intent of SLEPS is to exploit them to further develop this challenging topic, and to set up a scientific
network for EU project applications. Main scientific aims are to unravel new physiological roles for
SLs in the plant, namely during abiotic stress acclimatization and root colonization by symbiotic
fungi (to be addressed within Workpackage 1); and to fill in the knowledge gaps in the SLs
perception pathways in different target systems (to be addressed in Workpackage 2) . These aims
will be pursued through the full characterization of model crop plants impaired in SLs synthesis
upon abiotic stress and the interaction with symbiotic fungi. A collection of fungal mutants will be
used to identify genetic determinants for SLs perception/signaling on the fungal side. The
candidate plant receptor(s) will be characterized through biochemical assays. The synthesis and
screening of new SLs analogues with different bioactive properties and/or conveniently labeled for
tracking purposes will be instrumental to all of the above activities, and holds great potential for the
discovery and patenting of both new bioactive molecules and inhibitors. These would be of interest
not only for basic studies in plant physiology and plant-microbe interactions, but also for
commercial applications.

Ultimo aggiornamento: 13/05/2015 12:14
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