The Graduate School Experimental Plant Sciences (EPS)

20 million euros for Microbial Imprinting for Crop Resilience: MiCRop

A consortium, headed by Harro Bouwmeester (UvA), has been awarded 20 million euros for the research programme Microbial Imprinting for Crop Resilience (MiCRop). The programme is a collaboration between the University of Amsterdam (Harro Bouwmeester, project leader), Wageningen University & Research (Christa Testerink and Marcel Dicke), VU Amsterdam (Toby Kiers), Utrecht University (Corné Pieterse) and the Netherlands Institute of Ecology (Jos Raaijmakers).

Plants recruit and nurture billions of microbes on their roots. In return, the root microbiome supports the plant by improving the uptake of nutrients, enhancing tolerance to environmental stress and providing protection against pests and diseases. MiCRop will unlock how plants under stress recruit these beneficial root microbes. We will harness the yet unknown plant and microbial traits that facilitate this interaction, and translate their potential for the development of next-generation, stress-resilient crops that require fewer fertilisers and pesticides. More information


The Gravitation programme of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science is meant for research consortia that are among the best in the world in their field in carrying out groundbreaking research.