Interactions of Plants with Bacteria and Fungi: Molecular and Epigenetic Plasticity of the HostSubmit Manuscript on this topic
In both natural and agricultural ecosystems, plants are constantly challenged by microbes that can have a beneficial, neutral or detrimental impact on plant growth, health and productivity with important ecological and economic consequences. These interactions could take place in the root system or in aboveground organs and may include epiphytic as well as endophytic associations. The outcome of a specific biotic interaction depends on the range of highly dynamic responses that the host plant set up on the onset of microbial colonization. Epigenetics and molecular modifications contribute to the plasticity of plant responses.
In this Research Topic, we encourage the submission of manuscripts focused on epigenetics and molecular infrastructures evolved by plants to manage the different phases (from recognition to late stages of colonization) of plant-bacteria and plant-fungi interactions. In particular, we aim to shed light on specific molecular and epigenetic mechanisms involved in these processes. We welcome studies on molecular reprogramming and metabolic adjustments of host plants upon bacteria and fungi interaction, using 'omics' tools and genome-wide metabolic models. Moreover, studies describing the role of epigenetic mechanisms, such as DNA methylation/demethylation, posttranscriptional histone modifications, and small RNAs that may contribute to control gene expression levels of host plant upon bacteria and fungi challenge are also well suited in this Topic.
This Research Topic welcomes the submission of all article types, with a preference for Original Research, Reviews and Opinions, focusing on the following issues:
(1) Large-scale transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic analyses of plant responses upon bacterial and fungal colonization or in conditions associated to these interactions (application or artificial accumulation of hormones, PAMPs, effectors). Studies using large-scale analyses are welcome if they address functional characterizations and mechanistic insights as original results. Descriptive collection of transcripts, proteins or metabolites, including comparative sets as a result of different conditions or treatments, will not be considered for review, unless they are expanded and provide insight into the biological system.
(2) Epigenetic studies coupled by phenotypic evaluation of plants challenged by bacteria and fungi or in conditions associated to these interactions.
(3) Investigations on plant responses considering not only single but also multiple interactions ranging from tripartite associations, such as plant-biocontrol agent-pathogen systems, to the use of complex (multiple) natural or synthetic microbial consortia.
The Topic covers all types of plant-bacterial and plant-fungal interactions from beneficial (arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, rhizobia, plant growth promoting bacteria) to pathogenic associations. Furthermore, it aims to expand our knowledge on the mechanisms that shape plant responses to biotic stresses and clarify the epigenetic and molecular determinants allowing the recognition and discrimination of plant-interacting bacteria and fungi with different life styles.