Microbe Induced Resistance to Agricultural pests

Plants are intimately associated with a diversity of beneficial microorganisms in their root zone, some of which can enhance the plant resistance to insect pests. Thus, the use of Microbe-induced Resistance (MiR) to reduce pest losses in agriculture has emerged as a highly promising possibility to improve crop resilience and reduce use of harmful pesticides. European
companies have therefore started to develop and market beneficial microbes. However, MiR appears to be strongly contextdependent, with reduced benefits under certain biotic and abiotic conditions and in some crop varieties. Further, it is a challenge to deliver and ensure stable associations of beneficial microbes and plants, and avoid undesired effects on
beneficial insects. Thus we absolutely must improve our understanding of MiR mechanisms and context-dependency, in order to improve context stability of MiR and promote the use of MiR for crop protection. Our MiRA project will train 15 ESRs in basic and applied research on context-dependency of MiR, mechanisms, and impacts on plant performance and other
biocontrol organisms. We will use this understanding to improve our ability to predict the effectiveness of MiR under different conditions, to select plant and microbial strains with improved context-stability, and to develop better methods for the formulation of microbial inoculants and their application in agriculture. Finally, we will analyse economic prospects and
constraints for MiR development and use. To achieve these goals, we have assembled a consortium of 10 academic institutions and 6 companies, including microbial inoculant producers and agricultural advisors, with complementary skills in basic and applied research and innovation. Our ESRs will be trained within this multi-sectoral interdisciplinary network and be exposed to multiple working environments, providing them with excellent skills and opportunities for a future career pushing boundaries in European research and innovation.

Responsable scientifique

Thure Pavlo HAUSER – Université de Copenhague

Référent Intelligence des Patrimoines

David GIRON – Institut de Recherche sur la Biologie de l’Insecte (IRBI), UMR 7261

Type de projet


Appel à projets

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Networks (ITN)



Chantier thématique associé

Gastronomie, Santé & Bien-être