Microbiome and Genomics Lab - University of Houston
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Microbiome and Genomics Lab

Background:

According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC; https://www.ipcc.ch/) the accumulation of atmospheric CO2 entraps solar radiations emitted back to the earth's surface increases in global temperature known as global warming. This, in turn, develops a pattern of climate change termed Global Climate Change. The increase in atmospheric CO2 is due to extensive industrialization, urbanization, and natural resource use patterns that have drastically created an imbalance in the environmental system. Abiotic stresses such as increase or decrease of temperature, lack or abundance of water, changes in nutrients, and essential chemical composition of soil and water can influence an ecosystem's natural resource cycling system. Plants, a necessary part of human subsistence for food, shelter, and income, have been drastically impacted. These changes have hindered the desired natural productivity of plants, their niche in ecosystem, hence threatened the food security and human use values for future generations. Further, the utilizing the microbial resources of un-tapped extreme natural environment could help to identify key competent microbes that can be used against several human diseases and improving the plant-stress-tolerance in climate change scenarios.

Our Lab Approach:

  • Adopting nature-friendly approaches to improve plant growth, productivity, and stress tolerance against changing global climatic conditions. Major climatic factors include plants and microbes to high and low temperature, nutrients, water and hazardous contaminants
  • Utilizing native and stress-fit microbial symbionts that enhance the yield of plants. This helps to understand the underlying molecular mechanisms involved in the complexity of plant-microbe-stress-interactions
  • Integrating field and greenhouse-based studies, multi-omics (metagenomics, transcriptomics, genomics and metabolomics), microbiome networking and physio-molecular mechanisms to elucidate the complexity of plant-microbiome and stress-interactions
  • Understanding the genomics and evolutionary history of unique ecologically, medicinally and economically important plants

Areas of Research (3Ms):

  • Microbiome role in changing global climate
  • Molecular and stress physiology
  • Microbial and plant genomics