The plant microbiome explored: implications for experimental botany

Gabriele Berg, Daria Rybakova, Martin Grube, Martina Köberl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The importance of microbial root inhabitants for plant growth and health was recognized as early as 100 years ago. Recent insights reveal a close symbiotic relationship between plants and their associated microorganisms, and high structural and functional diversity within plant microbiomes. Plants provide microbial communities with specific habitats, which can be broadly categorized as the rhizosphere, phyllosphere, and endosphere. Plant-associated microbes interact with their host in essential functional contexts. They can stimulate germination and growth, help plants fend off disease, promote stress resistance, and influence plant fitness. Therefore, plants have to be considered as metaorganisms within which the associated microbes usually outnumber the cells belonging to the plant host. The structure of the plant microbiome is determined by biotic and abiotic factors but follows ecological rules …
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)995-1002
JournalJournal of experimental botany
Issue number4
Early online date7 Nov 2015
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2016

Fields of Expertise

  • Sonstiges

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