Decoding the Rhizobiota Interactome for Improved Crop Resilience (INTERACT)

INTERACT will focus on the essential and mutually beneficial interactions between plants and microbes below ground. This project will go beyond a mere inventory of wheat plant microbiome community members, and will provide much needed insight into rhizosphere ecology and microbial communication, with a goal of establishing diagnostic chemical/biological signatures for agro-system stability. With this knowledge, we can rationally and strategically manipulate plant-associated microbial communities to support high plant productivity across challenging climatic and stress scenarios. These critical advances in our understanding of rhizosphere community structure and the chemical landscape that influences its formation and function will be achieved by using genomics, transcriptomics, metaproteomics, metabolomics, in-field and greenhouse plant phenotyping, and network analysis/model construction for evaluating rhizosphere interactions for wheat.


Meet our team:

Project Lead

Associate Professor Mette Haubjerg Nicolaisen
University of Copenhagen 
Molecular Microbial Ecology


Project Manager

Kristine Kirkensgaard


University of Copenhagen

Professor Lars Stoumann Jensen, Plant Nutrition and Growth

Associate Professor (emeritus) Ole Nybroe

Associate Professor Dorette Müller-Stöver

Assistant Professor Rosanna Catherine Hennessy

Laboratory coordinator Dorthe Thybo Ganzhorn

Research Assistant Kitzia Yashvelt Molina Zamudio

Postdoctoral Researcher Frederik Bak

Postdoctoral Researcher Marie Louise Bornø

Graduate Student Ying Guan

Graduate Student Christoffer Frans von Kiær

Graduate Student Amber Kunne

Graduate Student Cortney Horn Herms

Graduate Student Alexander Holmgaard Andersen

Graduate Student Frederik Vejen Vig Fich


Aarhus University

Professor Carsten Suhr Jacobsen, Molecular Microbial Ecology
Senior Researcher Peter Stougaard, Molecular Microbiology/Metagenomics
Senior Researcher Anne Winding, Microbial Ecology

Postdoctoral Researcher Athanasios (Thanassis) Zervas

Postdoctoral Researcher Muhammad Zohaib Anwar

Graduate Student Marie Rønne Aggerbeck

Graduate Student Christine Lorenzen Elberg

Researcher Lea Ellegaard-Jensen

Researcher Rumakanta Sapkota

Laboratory Technician Tanja Bergovic

Laboratory Technician Tina Thane


North Carolina State University

Professor Amy Grunden, Microbial Physiology
Professor Ignazio Carbone, Microbial Phylogenomics
Professor Marc Cubeta, Fungal Ecology and Plant disease Ecology
Assistant Professor Oliver Baars, Metabolomics
Assistant Professor Manuel Kleiner, Proteomics

Laboratory Operations Manager Vicki Cornish

Programmer Jim White

Postdoctoral Researcher Fernanda Salvato

Graduate Student Althea Loucanides

Graduate Student Lindsey Becker

Graduate Student Clara Tang

Graduate Student Jabeen Ahmad

Postdoctoral Researcher Pathy Fernandez Moreno


Technical University of Denmark

Professor Jens Christian Frisvad, Fungal Ecology
Professor Ákos T. Kovács, Microbial Physiology
Professor Bjarne Kjær Ersbøll, Big Data/Statistics

IT Specialist & Coordinator Pietro Antonio Bortolozzo

Metabolomics Core Manager Aaron J. C. Andersen

Senior Researcher Thomas Martini Jørgensen

Laboratory technician Lisette Knoth-Nielsen

Postdoctoral Researcher Agnes M. Nielsen

Graduate Student Mathilde Nordgaard Christensen 


National Institute of Agricultural Botany

Professor Xiangming Xu, UK Plant Pathology

Postdoctoral Researcher Netsai Mhlanga