I work on assessing the effects of PGPB towards growth and development of plants in vitro and in field conditions. Following the approach of “targeted microbiome engineering”, my primary research focuses on engineering plant rhizospheric microbiome by recruitment of potential abiotic stress-alleviating PGP rhizobacteria (PGPR) in the natural soil with certain soil amendments which can then interfere with the plants’ defence pathways and alleviate stress from the plants while promoting their growth. I am currently studying the underlying mechanisms of this plant microbial interaction and gene expression in wheat by applying various molecular tools. The long-term goal of this research is to evaluate commercial feasibility of these potential soil amendments and validate their long-term impacts on the soil microbiome and crop productivity under stress conditions.

Funding: University of Queensland Research Training program (UQRTP)

Project members

Maria Batool

PHD candidate
School of Agriculture and Food Sustainability