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Manuscript Submission Deadline 30 June 2022
Manuscript Extension Submission Deadline 29 July 2022

Plants undergo various abiotic and biotic stress such as drought, soil salinity, and many diseases caused by fungi, bacteria, and viruses. With the rapid growth of human population and increasing demands for agricultural crops, global warming, and limited farmland and natural resources, there is a pressing ...

Plants undergo various abiotic and biotic stress such as drought, soil salinity, and many diseases caused by fungi, bacteria, and viruses. With the rapid growth of human population and increasing demands for agricultural crops, global warming, and limited farmland and natural resources, there is a pressing need for sustainable and effective agricultural practices to promote plant health and stress tolerance.

The role of plant-associated microorganisms in enhancing plant disease resistance and abiotic stress tolerance has been more and more characterized. Such activities could either be achieved through the microbiome’s interaction with the host by secreting plant hormones and modulating host immunity or through the microbiome’s interaction with the pathogens by inhibiting pathogens’ growth. Identification of microbiome-mediated disease resistance and stress tolerance in plants leads to efforts of designing synthetic microbial communities (SynComs) and testing the impact on various host phenotypes.

Despite the tremendous opportunities, many questions remain to be answered in order to better harness the plant-associated microorganisms for beneficial phenotypes: how do we rationally select members in the SynComs? What are the underlying mechanisms of the SynComs promoting plant health and stress tolerance? How do the SynComs interact with and impact the plant indigenous microbiome? How do SynComs react and adapt to various environmental conditions and host genotypes? In this research topic, we will highlight some of the recent advances in designing, utilizing, and mechanistic analyzing SynComs towards improving disease resistance and tolerance to abiotic stresses.

We welcome Original Research, Methods, Review, Opinion, and Perspectives articles in SynCom design, characterization of SynComs impact to plant immunity and stress tolerance, pathogen interaction, plant indigenous microbiome, as well as the environmental factors. Topics on SynCom’s impact to plant disease resistance as well as plant stress tolerance (such as drought, extreme temperatures, and pH) are encouraged. Studies using metagenomics, metatranscriptomics, and metabolomics approaches are particularly welcomed.

Keywords: syncom, microbiome, abiotic stress, plant disease, plants


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