Team Leader: Dr. Henning von Alten

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Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Universität Hannover has around 21.000 students in the natural sciences and engineering, the humanities and social sciences as well in law and economics. More than 2.500 persons work at the university in 9 faculties with around 160 departments and institutes. The research is strengthened by cooperation with internationally leading universities and research centres. With over 60 successful EU projects in FP6 and currently 36 projects in FP7, the Leibniz Universität Hannover has extensive experience in the implementation of EU funded research- and networking projects. The activities of the Institute of plant diseases and plant protection (IPP) focus on plant protection in horti- and agriculture. Within plant production plant protection plays a crucial role and ecological as well as economic aspects have to be considered. General objective of research in IPP is to analyse the fundamental mechanisms of interactions between crops, pyhtophagous organisms, beneficials and the environment, which maintain plant health. We aim to develop and establish environmentally safe methods of biological and integrated control. This includes the application of molecular tools and epidemiological results. Mykorrhiza  Group (Dr. H. von Alten): Interaction of mycorrhizal fungi and pathogens of the root system, Interaction of root endophytes and root diseases, Interaction of biocontrol organisms and endophytic or symbiotic organisms in the root system, Interaction of arbuscular mycorrhiza and insects, Induction of chilling tolerance in ornamental plants by arbuscular mycorrhiza and elucidation of molecular mechanisms involved, Inoculum technology of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, Use of ericoid mycorrhizal fungi and dark septate endophytes (DSE) in biological plant protection.

Participant role in the project: LUH will contribute to the microbiological improvement in WP4. They main task is to develop a combined inoculums technology and protocol for biochar –compost-mycorrhiza product for arbuscular and ericoid mycorrhizal fungi. LUH will investigate the role of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in nutrient transfer from  biochar and compost products to plants, besides that LUH will evaluate what effect the application of  biochar and compost products have on the development of the arbuscular as well as the ericoid mycorrhizal symbiosis and the bio-activity of the symbionts regarding nutrient transfer and plant health. The second field of activity of LUH is the development of inoculum technology thet allows the combined application of biochar and compost products and mycorrhizal fungi.LUH will also conduct validation trials in WP8 and also perform the dissemination of project (in WP 10) results.