PRECS student projects

Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 2021


Rhizobia serve as model system for examining how phenotypic changes in rhizobia influence the plant. Rhizobium-legume symbioses result in the formation of nodules on the root systems of host plants. Compositional and functional changes in microbial communities facilitate the host plants’ response to environmental stressors (i.e.; drought stress). Physiological effects of soil moisture on microbial communities result in specialized communities that can tolerate much low soil-moisture habitats while others are limited to high soil-moisture environments. This suggests microbial communities can assist in maintaining plant fitness when exposed to nonideal environmental conditions.


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Research was conducted with the cooperation of the Program of Ecology, Evolution and Conservation Biology and the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Financial support for the REU program was provided by the National Science Foundation Biological Integration Institutes Program grant NSF #2022049, through the Genomics and Eco-Evolution of Multi-Scale Symbioses (GEMS) Institute at the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.



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