Under pressure: exploring the mechanobiology of Phytophthora invasion

Project: PhD

Project Details


We apply mechanobiological tools to understand the invasion process Phytophthora spp., a highly disruptive and powerful pathogen with major impact on (amongst others) food crops Studies of this pathogen have started 150 years ago; it is still a highly relevant problem today. Our studies come from a fundamental physical chemical and cel biological background, and the pathogen is studied on idealised substrates using advanced microscopy and analysis. These enables us to deduct the fundamental physics of invasive (fracture) force generation, which we have coined the Naifu mechanism. We have observed thesame behaviour in planta as on our idealised substrates, and have validated the Naifu mechanism using disruption of specific elements. Further studies including microviscosity sensors in cell walls and plasma membranes, and studies using actin labeled GMO strains have further expanded insight into the invsaion process.
Effective start/end date1/07/1720/09/22


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