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Information für die Wissenschaft Nr. 28 | 25. Juni 2010
Priority Programme 1212 “Microbial Reprogramming of Plant Cell Development (Plant-Micro)“

3rd Call for Proposals

Microbial pathogens rob their hosts of nutrients and can kill plants, while symbiotic fungi and bacteria provide phosphate and nitrogen and improve plant health. Despite the differences there are numerous parallels between these two types of interaction. Both microbial pathogens and symbionts reprogram plant cellular development. The Priority Programme “Plant-Micro” aims to uncover the molecular switches that both cause and restrict disease in one system and lead to symbiosis in another. The programme will channel activities from different laboratories in a joint research strategy that exploits the plant model Arabidopsis. For research on symbiosis, “Plant-Micro” will focus exclusively on the model legumes Lotus and Medicago. Proposals using other model plant species are not encouraged, except where a convincing claim can be made that a particular mechanism cannot be studied appropriately in either of the three model plants and that the project contributes to the synergy within “Plant-Micro”. The purpose of this restriction is to maximise synergy between projects.

For the third funding period “Plant-Micro” invites applications with a focus on:

  • molecular dissection of plant developmental responses to microbes,
  • elucidation of microbial strategies used in reprogramming plant cellular development. This includes the identification of microbial effector molecules, their modes of action and how these intersect with the host defence machinery,
  • improvement of transformation efficiency of obligate biotrophic fungi for reverse genetic approaches, as this group of microorganisms possesses the most sophisticated infection strategies but cannot yet be manipulated,
  • computational modelling of microbial infection of plants at the cellular level using experimental data in combination with the mining of completely sequenced microbial and plant genomes.

Proposals for the final two-years funding period should be submitted on paper (3 copies) and on CD-ROM not later than 22 September 2010. Proposals must be written in English, and the title and project summary should also be provided in German. Please submit proposals, marked as “SPP 1212” and addressed to the attention of Dr. Catherine Kistner, to the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, Kennedyallee 40, 53175 Bonn. Proposals must be prepared according to the guidelines for individual research grants (1.02e).

Further Information

Guidelines for individual research grants can be found at:

  • www.dfg.de/foerderung/formulare_merkblaetter
  • 1.02e Research Grants – General Information and Guidelines for Proposals

Scientific questions can be directed to the coordinator of the Priority Programme:

  • Prof. Dr. Martin Parniske, University of Munich, phone: +49 89 2180-74700, parniske@lmu.de

Questions regarding the DFG applications should be directed to:

  • Dr. Catherine Kistner, catherine.kistner@dfg.de