Main Research Focuses
Bacteriology in fruit and vegetable crops
Phytopathogenic bacteria, in particular Erwinia amylovora, the causative agent of fire blight, are our main focus at Agrosope in Wädenswil. The aim of our research is to develop sustainable methods for minimizing the growth of phytopathogenic bacteria on crop plant.
The control of phytopathogenic organisms through iron depletion might be a contribution to this aim. Most organisms depend upon iron because it is an essential component of important enzymes such as peroxidases and catalases. Reducing iron availability, e.g. by iron chelators, is an approach to effectively hinder pathogens in their growth. The microbial diversity substantially contributes to the health and functioning of biological systems. We thus seek a better understanding of these synergistic functions of microbial communities and to employ our findings for a sustainable agriculture.
Mycology in fruit and vegetable crops
It is the goal of our research to study and understand the diversity and functions of fungi in fruit and vegetable crops in order to employ their beneficial fthezetb. Only a small minority of all fungi that occur in agro ecosystems are pathogens. The vast majority of fungi in fruit and vegetable crops are not pathogenic, rarely identified, and hardly studied.
As in all biological systems, the microbial diversity significantly contributes to the health and functionality of agricultural ecosystems. It is the goal of our work to influence the composition of fungi so that the productivity of agricultural ecosystems can be maintained in the long term and the spread of pathogens is prevented.