Engineering Plant-microbe Communication for Environmental Sensing
Plants rely on microbes for delivery of nutrients and protection from stresses such as pathogens. We aim to increase the functionality of plant-associated microbes by engineering soil bacteria to sense environmental stimuli of interest. In addition, controllable and orthogonal communication between plants and microbes is being developed. In combination, our synthetic plant-microbe community will be a completely engineereable system where sensing, computation, and response can be distributed between plant and microbial cells.